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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Robert Manwill's Mom, her Boyfriend Indicted in Boy's Death

Right: The body of 8-year-old Robert Manwill was pulled Aug. 3 from an Idaho irrigation canal. His mother said he had disappeared July 24 after leaving her apartment in Boise. On Wednesday, an indictment was made public. It charges the mother and her boyfriend with first-degree murder charges in Robert's death.

BOISE, Idaho (Aug. 19) - An 8-year-old Boise boy whose body was pulled from an irrigation canal earlier this month was tortured, beaten repeatedly and ultimately killed by his mother's live-in boyfriend, according to a grand jury indictment.

An Ada County grand jury indictment accuses the boy's mother, Melissa Jenkins, 30, of aiding and abetting her boyfriend, Daniel Ehrlick, in the death of her son, Robert Manwill, and in the weeks preceding his death hiding the boy's injuries from government officials who could have intervened.
Jenkins and Ehrlick, 36, were each charged with first-degree murder Wednesday in the death of the boy, whose disappearance launched a massive law enforcement and community effort to find him last month. One week after his disappearance, an estimated 2,500 people turned out to scour the south Boise neighborhood where Jenkins lived and surrounding areas.

His body was found Aug. 3 in an irrigation canal near the small town of Kuna, several miles southwest of Boise...

The indictment made public Wednesday charges Ehrlick of a second felony for failing to report a death. It accuses him of beating the boy, causing severe head trauma and abdominal injuries that led to the boy's death on July 24. Neither the indictment nor prosecutors have divulged the exact cause of death.

Ehrlick served time in an Idaho prison after being convicted of burglary and grand theft in the 1990s and was arrested for several probation violations, according to Idaho court records. He also has been convicted of battery and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The mother, who only had visitation rights for her son, is charged in the indictment with a second felony, an accessory to failing to report a death. The indictment also accuses her of knowing her son was being beaten and suffering emotional trauma, yet refusing to get him medical attention and deliberately concealing the child's injuries from those who could have stepped in to help...

Jenkins and Ehrlick are scheduled to appear in court again Sept. 1. Jenkins is being held on a $2 million bond, while Ehrlick is being held without bond.
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