Missing 5-year-old Illinois boy, Andrew “AJ” Freund, was found deceased on rural land in Woodstock, Illinois, Wednesday morning, and officials say his parents are responsible for his death.
According to Crystal Lake Police Chief James Black, the parents of A.J., JoAnn Cunningham and Andrew Freund Sr., have been charged with numerous felonies in connection with his death. When confronted with forensic analysis on the parents’ cellphones and other information, they both reportedly provided details that led to the little boy’s location.
The suspects are both behind bars. They’ve been been charged with:
- First-degree murder
- Aggravated battery
- Aggravated domestic battery
- Concealment of homicidal death (Freund Sr.)
- Failure to report a missing child/death
A.J. was found wrapped in plastic and placed in a shallow grave. The cause of death is unknown at this time.
“A.J. is no longer suffering and his killers have been brought to justice,” Black said.
FBI Special Agent Colin McGuire thanked the Crystal Lake Police Department and other officials and experts who helped find the boy.
“Nobody will sleep until justice is brought to A.J.,” McGuire said.
BREAKING: Crystal Lake Police hold press conference on Andrew ‘AJ’ Freund.Speaking at the conference will be Crystal Lake Police Chief James Black and FBI Special Agent Colin McGuire.Police and other law enforcement have found the body of the 5-year-old Crystal Lake boy who has been missing since Thursday. #AJFreund #CrystalLake
Posted by Northwest Herald on Wednesday, April 24, 2019
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Freund Sr. reported his son missing on April 18 at 9:04 a.m. He told the 911 dispatcher that he couldn’t find A.J., and explained the last time he saw him was the previous night, in their home off of Dole Avenue in Crystal Lake.
Freund Sr. also told the dispatcher he had an early doctor’s appointment on the morning of April 18, but when he returned home between 8:15 a.m. to 8:30 a.m., his son was missing. The man said he thoroughly checked the home and the surrounding areas and couldn’t find A.J.
“I have no idea where he could be,” Freund said.
Authorities said from the beginning of the investigation that they didn’t believe the child was abducted, as a canine unit couldn’t place the child’s scent past the family’s home.
On Wednesday, investigators took numerous items from the family’s home, including a shovel, a large storage tub, a mattress, and paper bags.
The story continues to develop. Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.
[Feature Photo: A.J. Freund/Handout]