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Parents Hid Dead Body of 16-Year-Old Son After Claiming He Ran Away in Arizona

Parents Hid Dead Body
Amber-Leah Valentine and Jon Imes. PHOTO: MOHAVE COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE

Authorities say an Arizona couple was among three people detained after they reportedly informed police that their 16-year-old son had run away when they had really discarded and concealed his dead corpse.

According to a March 6 news statement from the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office, Amber-Leah Valentine, 41, and Jon Imes, 41, both of Kingman, have been charged with felony abandonment/concealment of a deceased body. Richard Pounds, 34, of Kingman, is charged with child abuse and aggravated assault in connection with the case.

According to People News, the boy’s parents, Valentine and Imes, called officers on Feb. 25, alleging their 16-year-old son had walked away from home after last being seen the morning before, according to the sheriff’s office.

Deputies said they arrived at Anson Smith and Indian Canyon Road in Kingman three days later after a male’s body was found wrapped in a blanket behind a stone wall.

“It’s a very traveled location, so for them to put the body there, it was very strange,” a sheriff’s office official told KPHO-TV of the allegations. Meanwhile, police were trying to figure out how the teenager died.

According to the statement, on March 2, Valentine contacted the sheriff’s office and stated she had just liberated a 14-year-old juvenile who was being held captive by Valentine’s roommates, Pounds, and another person. Valentine and the 14-year-old were both sent to Kingman Regional Medical Center.

Valentine allegedly confessed to the sheriff’s office that she and her husband, Imes, had dumped their 16-year-old son’s body at the area where officers found his body.

“She admitted that she lied to Deputies when they reported him as a runaway and acknowledged that he was already deceased at the time of the report,” the release states. “During questioning, Jon Imes admitted to disposing of his son’s body and lying to Deputies about him running away.”

According to the sheriff’s office, during an interview with detectives at the hospital, the 14-year-old said Pounds shot her in the eye with a BB pistol and revealed that this was one of several instances of violence in the home.

According to officials, the child is currently in the custody of the Arizona Department of Child Safety. After serving a search warrant at the couple’s residence, deputies detained and charged Valentine and Imes. The roommates were also questioned by investigators, but only Pounds was charged.

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