Affidavit details interview with mother and boyfriend in child’s death

Crime

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A just-released affidavit is giving more details about the death of two-year-old Jacob Aviles. His mother and her boyfriend are charged with first-degree murder.

The affidavit details what police said they learned in their investigation.

Just before 11 a.m. On Sept. 29, 2019, police officers were asked to assist the fire department at a home in the 1100 block of W. Munnell. Fire and EMS had been dispatched to the home because of an unconscious person.

That person was 2-year-old Jacob Aviles. He was pronounced deceased at 11:27 a.m.

Police say the child had numerous bruises to his body, including his head, back, buttocks, stomach, arms and legs.

Detectives interviewed the mother, Stephanie Aviles, 25.

She told them she had left the home with her daughter. She said her boyfriend Bernardo Gonzalez-Mejia, 31, was taking care of Jacob and that when she left, Jacob was at the kitchen table eating and was fine.

According to the affidavit, Aviles said her boyfriend called her while she was gone and told her Jacob had fainted and was not responding. She said she would return home.

Detectives say she told them that Gonzalez-Mejia called her again to say Jacob was turning yellow and that he saw a piece of meatball in his mouth and took it out, but he was still not responding. He told her to call 911 and she did.

When she got to the home, first responders were working on Jacob.

During the interview, police asked Aviles about Jacob’s injuries and bruising on his body.

She denied ever hitting him or her children and she said her boyfriend never hit her children.

According to the affidavit, Aviles said she noticed that when Jacob was left alone with Gonzalez-Mejia, he would have an injury, but there was always an explanation.

Detectives say she told them she would leave her six-year-old son with Jacob and Gonzalez-Mejia to see if her boyfriend was hurting Jacob on purpose. She told police, her older son never reported anything to her.

Aviles told police Jacob recently had two serious injuries to his private area that required trips to the hospital for treatment. Police say she told them those injuries happened when her boyfriend was caring for Jacob.

Detectives also questioned Gonzalez-Mejia. They say he initially denied causing any injuries to Jacob.

They say Gonzalez-Mejia said some of the injuries were caused when Jacob fell or when something fell on him.

Detectives say the boyfriend then admitted he hit Jacob the previous night with a belt on his buttock, over his diaper, and that he did not hit him hard.

According to the affidavit, it was because Jacob was not eating his food, even though Gonzalez-Mejia was aware Jacob was not feeling well.

Police say they showed the boyfriend pictures of the injuries to Jacob’s buttock. They say that he said it was possible one of the bruises could have been from the belt strike.

The autopsy at the Sedgwick County Regional Forensic Science Center lists the following findings: blunt force trauma, multiple contusions of the head, trunk and extremities, liquid blood in the abdominal cavity, multiple lacerations of the mesentery, and a healing rib fracture.

The cause of death was ruled as blunt force trauma and the manner was ruled as homicide.

At the time of Jacob’s death, two other children were taken into protective custody.

Aviles remains in custody on $300,000 bond. Her boyfriend remains in custody on $450,000 bond. Their next court date is Dec. 12.

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