This photo released Thursday, May 30, 2019, by the Denver district Attorney shows Leland Pankey. The father of a 7-year-old boy, whose body was found encased in concrete in a Denver storage unit has been charged in the child’s death. Denver-Attorney Beth McCann’s office says Leland Pankey was charged Thursday with first-degree murder, child abuse resulting in death and tampering with a deceased man in Caden Mcwilliams’ death. Pankey, 39, is serving a state prison sentence on unrelated charges. (Denver district Attorney via AP)
DENVER – Colorado prosecutors on Thursday charged the father of a 7-year-old boy, whose body was found encased in concrete inside a Denver storage unit with murder.
The Denver district attorney’s office also charged Leland Pankey, 39, with child abuse resulting in death and tampering with a dead body. He is serving a state prison sentence on unrelated charges, and it was not clear Thursday he has a lawyer to respond to the new declaration in the death of his son, Caden McWilliams.
Court records released Thursday that the mother of the boy worked with researchers when they are confronted with the accusations of child abuse resulting in death and abuse of a corpse in his death. The records say Pankey and her lawyers met with investigators in March, about two months after she was indicted.
The records say Elisha Pankey told the police that the family moved into a hotel at the end of May 2018 and she knew that her husband physically abused Caden and it was not feeding the boy. Elisa Pankey also told the police that her husband kept their son in a doghouse “a few days” before he died in the middle of July.
Previously released court records said Elisa Pankey told a fellow prisoner that they kept the boy in the carrier overnight, despite his cries of thirst and warm. Pankey said the boy was dead one morning and she believed that he had suffocated, the records state.
The woman, who is not identified in the court records, told the police that Pankey said she and her husband took the body of the boy — still in the animal carrier to the storage device, poured concrete over him and hit the carrier in plastic garbage bags.
The authorities will not find Mcwilliams’ body until December as they investigated Elisa Pankey the allegations of domestic violence against Leland Pankey. An autopsy found signs that McWilliams was severely emaciated and evidence of injuries to his head, chest and limbs, some of which showed signs of healing.
Denver-Attorney Beth McCann called the young boy’s death a “heinous crime”.
“This is the case is difficult and painful for all involved,” McCann said in a statement.
Leland Pankey is by the court on 27 June.
Elisa Pankey is due back in court on Tuesday. It is represented by the state, the public defenders’ office, which bars the lawyers from commenting on individual cases.