Father Faces Charges in the Disappearance of His Five Children
This press release was originally issued by the Lexington County, South Carolina Sheriff’s Department at 7:15 p.m. The contact for the sheriff’s department is Major John Allard at (803) 785-2415.
Lexington County Sheriff’s Department detectives in cooperation with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and local and state law enforcement agencies in Alabama and Mississippi at about 4:45 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time) on Tuesday, September 9 recovered what detectives think are five sets of human remains off Highway 10 near Camden, Alabama.
Lexington County Sheriff Lewis McCarty said charges are pending against Timothy Ray Jones, Jr., 32, of Lexington, in connection with the disappearance of his five children, ages 1 to 8. Jones and his five children were reported missing to the Sheriff’s Department on Wednesday, September 3. The five children were last seen in Lexington County with Jones, who has joint custody of the children. Jones is divorced from the children’s mother.
Lexington County Coroner Earl Wells was making arrangements on Tuesday to transport what detectives think are five sets of human remains from Camden, Alabama, to Lexington County in order to conduct autopsies on the remains and positively identify the remains.
Sheriff’s department detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Jones on a charge of unlawful neglect of a child by a legal custodian, McCarty said. Detectives expect to obtain additional arrest warrants for Jones as the investigation remains active and ongoing. Detectives will return Jones to Lexington County to face charges in connection with the disappearance of his five children.
McCarty will conduct a news conference at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, September 10 in order to provide additional information about the investigation of the disappearance of the five children. The news conference will be conducted at the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department Training Center at 541 Gibson Road in Lexington.
Sheriff’s department detectives, SLED agents, and FBI agents traveled from South Carolina to Mississippi and Alabama on Sunday, September 7 and gathered information and evidence in Mississippi and Alabama in connection with the disappearance of the five children, McCarty said.
Jones was being held on Tuesday at the Smith County (Mississippi) Jail in Raleigh, Mississippi, on charges connected to a motor vehicle public safety checkpoint that Smith County Sheriff’s Office deputies conducted on Saturday, September 6, McCarty said. Smith County sheriff’s deputies detained Jones at about 7:57 p.m. on Saturday at the public safety checkpoint and contacted the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department after determining that Jones and his five children were listed as missing persons on the National Crime Information Center computer database. The five children were not with Jones when deputies detained Jones.
The children’s mother reported Jones and the five children missing to the Sheriff’s Department at 6:11 p.m. on Wednesday, September 3, McCarty said. Deputies entered the five children and Jones as missing persons on the National Crime Information Center computer database. The five children lived at a home near Lexington with Jones, who is the children’s primary legal custodian.
The mother of the five children told Sheriff’s Department deputies that she had been unable to contact Jones, McCarty said. The mother also told deputies that there had been other occasions when she had been unable to contact Jones. Neighbors told deputies that Jones said he was moving with his children from his home near Lexington to another state.