Police are investigating a 7-year-old boy’s cause of death after charging his mother with abuse on Monday.
As Yahoo News reports, Elisha Pankey, 43, was charged with child abuse resulting in death and abuse of a corpse three weeks after police discovered the corpse of her son, Caden McWilliams, encased in cement in a Denver self-serve storage unit.
Further, Pankey was arrested on December 22 for suspicion of heroin possession, a day prior to police discovering the body.
Leasing agent here confirms she knows the suspect & her son personally. Public records show this is Elisha Pankey’s most recent address— Cherry Plaza Apts near Evans & I-25. Pankey is accused of abusing and killing her 7yo son. Boy’s body was found in nearby storage unit. pic.twitter.com/xhKiZbWAFJ
— Michael Konopasek (@MikeKonopasek) January 3, 2019
Denver District Attorney Beth McCann announced Pankey’s charges, stating that Caden had been missing for months.
According to Yahoo News, McCann said in a statement:
Thanks to the tenacious work by both the Aurora and Denver Police Departments, we now know that young Caden was not only missing for several months, he was no longer alive. This is a terrible tragedy for the community. While this case will take time to resolve, it will take even longer for our community to learn and heal.
According to Denver7, law enforcement believes the boy could have died as early as last May.
Denver Public School officials reported that the Caden had missed the last week of school in May, but it’s not clear where he was last seen in public.
— Rob Low (@RobLowTV) January 3, 2019
Ellis Elementary School released a statement regarding the former student’s death:
This is tragic loss for the entire Ellis Elementary School community. Caden McWilliams was the sweetest boy. He stood out from others from the moment he walked through the school doors every morning with a huge smile on his face. His smile and eyes showed how kind and sweet he was at the core. Other students wanted to be his friend and looked to Caden for what to do next. Caden was a model student who was not afraid to do the right thing simply because it was the right thing to do. He worked hard and did well academically. He was always positive, caring and lived the Ellis core value of Integrity. During recess, Caden would always notice friends who needed someone to play with and he would go to them. He was a truly kind and caring little boy who loved being at school with his teachers and his friends.
Pankey turned herself in last Wednesday and is being held on $250,000 bond.