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(WJW) — Ohio prosecutors allege a 17-year-old Canton girl killed her 33-year-old boyfriend’s mother, just hours after she had given the Toledo man an ultimatum to “do something about her” for interfering in their relationship.
The body of 53-year-old Nicole Jones — wrapped in a tarp and hidden in a dumpster that was taken across state lines the next day — was never recovered. The couple then fled the state, launching a search for the missing juvenile that led authorities to Mexico.
Kaitlyn Coones, 17, of Canton, later admitted to killing Nicole Jones by bludgeoning her in the head with a rock while her back was turned, then strangling her to death, Lucas County Assistant Prosecutor Andrew Lastra told FOX 8 News.
Prosecutors are now seeking to have the teen tried as an adult on charges including aggravated murder and abuse of a corpse, but an adult court case has not yet been certified, he said.
Meanwhile, her boyfriend, 33-year-old Jonathon Jones, whom authorities say has also admitted to his role in his mother’s death and the cover-up, is now facing similar charges in Lucas County.
It started with a welfare check
In April, Coones was reported missing from her Canton foster home. She went to Toledo to be with Jonathon, who lived with his mother at her Timbers Edge Boulevard home in Sylvania Township, according to authorities.
One of the girl’s caretakers told police Coones had sent her a text message claiming she had “killed two people, one of them being her boyfriend’s mother,” according to a police report by Sylvania Township police Detective Jake Albright.
Canton police asked Sylvania Township police to investigate the Jones home, but those officers didn’t find anyone at the home, nor were they “looking for items of evidence,” Lastra said. “They were basically checking on the house.”
Deputy U.S. Marshals were already at the home with an arrest warrant for Jonathon, according to the township police report. Coones at the time was listed as a missing and endangered juvenile. Jonathon had skipped his sentencing in Wood County on charges of endangering children and attempt to commit pandering obscenity, to which he had pleaded guilty, township police said in May.
They were found in Mexico
The second person Coones claimed to have killed was a man whom she shot at in Arizona — an unaware bystander waiting at a bus stop, Lastra said. But the man was not actually struck by the gunfire. That incident was referred to Arizona authorities, he said.
The couple was found by Mexican authorities on May 8 in Ahumada, a municipality in northern Mexico. They were driving Nicole’s 2021 Buick Encore and had the woman’s Social Security card, ID, credit cards and her health insurance card, according to the police report. Authorities also recovered a backpack with “burgundy stains,” it reads.
Jonathon was arrested, and Coones was turned over to American authorities at the El Paso border station, where she was interviewed by the FBI.
She gave him ‘an ultimatum’
Lastra said Coones felt that Nicole was “interfering” with their relationship.
The day Coones reportedly ran away to Jonathon’s Toledo home, she snuck in through a window, and Nicole didn’t know she was there, according to the police report.
Coones told FBI agents she gave Jonathon “an ultimatum,” according to the police report.
“He had five hours to decide what they were going to do about his mother,” Albiright wrote.
After that five hours had passed, Coones reportedly said she waited another hour.
“When he didn’t act, she went outside, found a large-sized rock and when Nicole was distracted in the refrigerator in the kitchen … Kaitlynn — by her own admission — bludgeoned Jonathon’s mom and strangled her,” Lastra said.
A tarp and plastic bags
Coones told agents she and Jonathon then went shopping for cleaning supplies to clean the kitchen floor and tarps and large garbage bags to wrap Nicole’s body, according to the police report.
After her admission, authorities obtained a search warrant for the Timbers Edge Boulevard home and Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation agents processed the home, finding “probable blood” on the kitchen floor near and beneath the refrigerator where Nicole was allegedly bludgeoned.
Coones said they hid Nicole’s body in a dumpster at an apartment complex along Holland Sylvania Road near his home, according to Lastra.
At the time, Jonathon was wearing a GPS monitor as a bond condition in his prior child endangering case. Authorities tracked that monitor right to the apartment, which corroborated what Coones told federal agents in her confession, Lastra said.
A refuse company removed that dumpster from the premises the next day, taking it across the state line into Michigan for processing, Lastra said. Nicole’s body was never recovered, despite best efforts, he said.
Murder cases moving forward
Lucas County prosecutors are now awaiting a judge’s order allowing Kaitlyn Coones’ adult court case to proceed. The case would then be presented to a Lucas County grand jury for possible indictment, Lastra said.
Jonathon Jones is due back in court next month. He faces counts of aggravated murder, murder in the commission of felonious assault, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse. Court records indicate he intends to plead not guilty by reason of insanity.