A mother and her ex-boyfriend were in the Laclede County jail Monday afternoon. The woman's father says the pair was arrested and then released later that day.
Jonathan Boudonck's grandpa has been fighting for three years to see someone charged for the death of the 23-month-old. Greg Boudonck says his own daughter texted him on the way to jail "I'm headed to jail. It's your fault. I hate you." Late Monday evening Boudonck says she and her then boyfriend were released from jail without charges. Despite her arrest, Boudonck says he still loves his daughter but also wants justice. “He was a little boy that was innocent and didn't deserve what he had happen,” Boudonck said.
For years the grandpa desperate for answers drove around Lebanon with his dead grandbaby's picture taped to his truck window. Next to the picture is a sign that asks anyone who looks "If Laclede County will let the toddler's death go unpunished."
Boudonck says he always thought his daughter’s boyfriend killed the boy. "There was barely any water in the lungs so it couldn't have been drowning but Jonathan's brain was more swollen than they've seen," Boudonck said. On June 23, 2007, Jonathan was found unresponsive inside a Budget Inn Hotel room. Boudonck says he suffered head trauma.
His mother and her then-boyfriend told police that Jonathan fell. The boyfriend told KSPR News the same story in a 2008 interview with him while he was in jail on other charges. “He just fell you know what I mean I saw him in the process I went in to even catch him but he still had fallen and hit his head on the side of the tub,” the boyfriend told KSPR News reporter Joanna Small.
Boudonck says he never bought the boyfriend’s story. He protested on foot outside the courthouse and with the sign on his truck. His fight, a new police chief and a new look at the "cold case" has now led to two arrests --` the boyfriend and Boudonck's daughter. "I feel maybe she protected him,” Boudonck said. “She's stupid. She's ignorant." The day of the arrests is bittersweet. "I stuck with my daughter. I still love her," Boudonck said. He says no matter who is responsible they need to be punished.
Police say new evidence and new statements led to the arrests. “The arrests of both individuals are the culmination of an in-depth investigation that resulted in additional evidence and statements obtained by detectives,” Lebanon Police Chief Joseph Brauer wrote in a news release. He says he can’t give any details about the new information. “Everything right now is sitting in the office of the prosecuting attorney for her review,” Brauer said. “You'll have to ask her I don't want to compromise what we do have."
KSPR News called Laclede County Prosecutor Angie Hemphill-Wright Monday afternoon. She has not returned the call. With 24 hour holds prosecutors have 24 hours to file charges or the arrested are released.As of 10:00 Monday night, the prosecutor has not confirmed the pairs release.
Police say they arrested the man on suspicion of involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child. They arrested the woman on suspicion of endangering the welfare of a child.
Prosecutors previously said there was not enough evidence to file charges.