CLEVELAND (AP) — The caregivers for a 4-year-old boy whose remains were found in a garbage bag in the backyard of a vacant Cleveland home have pleaded not guilty to charges including murder.
Thirty-one-year-old Joanne Vega and 36-year-old Romaine Tolbert also pleaded not guilty Thursday to kidnapping, corpse abuse and other charges in the death of Eliazar Ruiz and are being held without bond. The boy’s body was found in September 2017.
Eliazar wasn’t identified until last year after his incarcerated mother saw a forensic sketch of the boy’s face on television news. His identify was confirmed through DNA. It hasn’t been determined how he died.
Authorities have said the mother placed Eliazar in Vega’s and Tolbert’s care in 2015.
Messages seeking comment were left for both defendants’ attorneys