Jhessye Shockley Thrown in Tempe Trash Can; Case Now a Homicide Investigation, Glendale Police Say

shockley.jpg
The body of 5-year-old Jhessye Shockley was thrown in a trash can in Tempe, Glendale police now say.
The Glendale Police Department says it now believes the body of missing 5-year-old Jhessye Shockley was thrown in a trash can in Tempe and may be in a landfill just south of the Valley.

Glendale Officer Tracey Breeden tells New Times that the case is now a homicide investigation and that Jhessye Shockley's mother, Jerice Hunter, is the primary focus.

Breeden says information was given to police -- after Hunter was arrested on child abuse charges last month -- that the 5-year-old's body was thrown in the trash. Breeden would only say the information was given to police through investigative leads and through Silent Witness.

Trash from the location where police suspect Jhessye was dumped is taken to the Butterfield Landfill south of the Valley. Detectives will now determine whether to search the landfill, a decision they'll base on -- among other variables -- the likelihood that they'll be able to find the body.

Jhessye was reported missing on October 11. Since then, Hunter's played the role of a concerned, grieving mother. However, the Glendale P.D.'s investigation revealed that Hunter served time in prison for abusing her other children. Detectives also determined that Hunter locked the girl in a closet for what may have been weeks before reporting her missing.

According to court records obtained by New Times, two of Jhessye's siblings, who are now in foster care, told their foster parents about some of the abuse Jhessye received at the hands of Hunter, who spent four years in a California prison for child abuse -- and scolded us last month for asking whether she hurt her daughter .

Jhessye's 13-year-old sister told her foster parents that several weeks before the little girl was reported missing, Hunter came home and found her watching TV with a boy from the neighborhood. The girl told her foster parents -- and later police -- that Hunter called Jhessye a "ho" and dragged her into a bedroom where the sister could hear Jhessye screaming and crying.

Following the apparent beating, Hunter kept the child in a closet. Her sister told police she had to bring the 5-year-old water when Hunter was out so she wouldn't become dehydrated. She would let the her out when Hunter was gone, but quickly put Jhessye back when Hunter got home to keep her from getting in trouble.

The sister also told investigators that she saw bruises and cuts on Jhessye's face and body while she was kept in the closet, and that her eyes were black and only slightly open.

The 13-year-old also told police that her sister's hair had been pulled out and that she didn't look alive. The older sibling described Jhessye as looking like a "zombie" and that the closet she was kept in smelled like "dead people" and was like a "grave."

All of the alleged abuse happened weeks before Hunter called police on October 11. The last time anyone saw Jhessye alive was September 22, which was the last time records show her attending school. Her sisters say they never saw Jhessye the day her mother reported her missing, when Hunter told police that the older siblings were watching the girl as she ran errands.

On October 9, Hunter bought a bottle of bleach at a Walgreens. She then cleaned the entire apartment and scrubbed her shoes that were in the closet with Jhessye with bleach, the sister told police.

Court records also show that Hunter was suspected of child abuse in April, and a report was filed. It's unclear whether Child Protective Services was alerted about the reported abuse.

Hunter has made sobbing attempts to declare her innocence since the day she reported her daughter missing more than two weeks after she was last seen alive. She's blamed everyone from the media to the Glendale Police Department for not locating her daughter. When we spoke to her, Hunter went ballistic when we asked if she had hurt her daughter.

"I really think they should take the focus off of me and quit asking people -- wasting time -- if I did something to my daughter," Hunter told us last month. "They should quit holding my babies hostage and trying to get them to say something [about what happened to Jahessye]. [Authorities are] telling me 'your kids aren't saying anything.' It's been 13 days. What do they expect my babies to say that they haven't already said? [CPS] don't wanna hear 'we love our mama, we wanna go home we want our mommy' -- they don't wanna hear that. They won't let me see them because they don't want them running into my arms. They don't wanna hear them scream 'mommy.'"

Hunter was arrested last month on child-abuse charges but wasn't officially charged because the Maricopa County Attorney's Office didn't want to create a double-jeopardy situation if police could gather enough evidence to later charge her with murder.

Glendale police say a decision about whether to search the landfill will be made in the next few weeks.

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77 comments
nkhestoo
nkhestoo

Please donate to their fund. They need help with burial fees and lawyer fees.Please pray for this family. They need your personal help. Find your heart, your spirit, and your soul, and you will have heaven on Earth.  Thank you and God bless you!

Sdana34
Sdana34

sociopath or mentally ill..she should have NEVER had her children given back to her after serving time for child abuse..CPS DROPPED THE BALL ON THAT ONE..my sister does foster care for.CHILDREN who have been thru the same stuff..and it's the children that are FUCKED UP FOR THE REST OF THERE LIVES BECAUSE OF WHAT THE PARENT DID TO THEM..TOO BAD ITS NOT LEGAL TO STERILIZE THE MOTHERS WHO ABUSE THERE CHILDREN ..AND ...KEEP HAVING THEM ..TO ABUSE..

Agonzalez1077
Agonzalez1077

I wish they would just search the landfill already.  This lil girl needs to be laid to rest properly if this is all true.  A landfill aint the right place for an innocent beautiful child. 

anyafanq
anyafanq

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Jennifer
Jennifer

Woops.  correction:This article has the only photo I've seen with Jhessye and another child in it.  Hadn't noticed it until just now.  Still, all those other photos that are professionally done and the video they keep playing show Jhessye by herself.

Jennifer
Jennifer

Here's a new theory for you:There are a TON of things that just don't add up in this case.  If Jhessye was LOCKED in the closet, how did the sister sneak her food and water?  (as per the police report of the girl's statement).  How does a 13 year old know what dead people smell like?  I'm 41 and I've never smelled a dead person.  Dead animals, sure, but does a dead human smell the same?  I honestly don't know.   She also said the closet looked like a grave.  That's so non-specific it could mean anything the cop interpreted it to mean.  How exactly does a CLOSET look like a GRAVE???  The whole story sounds made up to me.  It sounds like the kids were watching Halloween zombie movies a couple of weeks prior to making the statements.  That would explain their descriptions of the closet and of Jhessye looking like a zombie.And who has a closet with a lock on it anyway?  Closet doors don't have locks.  Did the cops ask the girl to explain how Jhessye was supposedly locked in a closet???Jerice Hunter pleaded "no contest" to the charges in CA.  She didn't plead "guilty".  Maybe she never abused Jhessye and the kids just lied because they hate their mom.  You can be a totally crappy parent without ever laying a hand on your kid.  Maybe Jerice really hates being a parent and that's why she's not searching for Jhessye or demanding her other kids get returned to her.  Maybe she's happier without them.  It's very possible she did nothing to Jhessye and that Jhessye was simply abducted by a stranger.It's also possible that the older siblings did something to Jhessye.  If they made up the story about her being starved and locked in the closet and abused, then why wouldn't you suspect them of being the ones who did something to her?  In the pictures and photos, Jhessye, if anything, looks spoiled.  I've seen no other photos with Jhessye's siblings in them.  Looking at the photos, it's as if Jhessye was an only child.  If the other siblings were ignored/neglected, that could provide motive. Could sibling jealousy have been the motive?I think the cops are wasting time and resources pursuing Jerice as a suspect.  My number one suspect is the 13 year old sister.   The first born is always the most damaged by the parents.  Especially when the parents are horrible parents.

Miss Yollie143
Miss Yollie143

TThat bitch needs to DIE period!!!!!!!!!!!!!! R.I.p bbygurl

Ochoadeanna31
Ochoadeanna31

and investigation supposedly happened on october 11 why the hell are police waiting so long to look at land fill for her body when all they need is the evidence of blood droppings on trash  something is fishy about the police and they need to act quick on this no body of this precious missing little girl NOW  not in a month or so   especially with the rain that we been having that blood is probly washed away

ochoa
ochoa

well the police better do a DNA test from the crime scene I honestly don't think her body will be found HELLO the dogs went after the scent of blood and probly eat the girl only evidence police should do is blood dropping to identify it her  what i don't understand is why won't they do that powder stuff that glows at night show there is humane blood in that trash can  

Sexyeuphoria
Sexyeuphoria

why wait just get the cadivore dogs and find her, she needs to laid to rest for the rest of the family to starting healing, even if the mother is a monster!!!!!

Valenciaaz
Valenciaaz

Sadly i always knew this lady was guilty. I resented the way the race card was used by grandma in her passed interviews. It is sad. This poor little girl deserved a full life. Guest, life is what you make it. If life is sad to you than do something about it. As far as this story is concerned, justice will come......................

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

It strikes me that in all the tv interview videos and written reports whenever Jerice Hunter is asked if she hurt or killed the child, she doesn't say "NO". Instead she answers with accusations about what the cops and the rest of the world should be doing to find the child.

Has anyone seen Jerice actually say she (1) didn't hurt the child and/or (2) that she doesn't know where the body of the child is or might be?

Matthiasmom2010
Matthiasmom2010

This is wrong know matter who fault it is the child black white purple or green its a child the mother is sick the child found or not she beats her kids she will always be prime suspect n she should be locking a child in closet is going far something isn't right she is sick n should be locked up until that child is found

Timebomb1
Timebomb1

Headline is misleading.  Police 'believes' she was thrown into trash.  No body found yet. And let's be real here, hasn't Jerice Hunter always been the prime suspect??

Btroupe78
Btroupe78

I find this whole situation a complete disaster. She looked "surprised" in the video. The only thing that I agree with what she said is that CPS hates to see children screaming and crying to get back with Mommy. I am a victim of CPS, in which the caseworker lied and made false accusations then stopped my visitations with my mom completely! after they had kidnapped me from she and my dad. I didn't see them again for 10 years here in Texas til I was 18 years old. What gets me is Hunter was imprisoned for abusing her other children. How the hell were they able to go back to her!! Oh! How we PROTECT our babies!!!!

Jess
Jess

What a shame! So sad may she rest in peace

malapai
malapai

Well. A black girl in a dumpster ought to get Rev. Al's attention. Then this will get sorted out.

malapai
malapai

Why not you? You already 'know' she is guilty.

Spridral75
Spridral75

#1 there is such things as changing a door nob, and there are MANY of them that have a lock ONLY on one side IE: a bathroom door.

#2 If her older children are scared of her (and I would be if my parent beat me so bad they ended up in prison) thet wouldn"t DARE anger her by letting that baby out when their mother was home... And they probably wouldn't report it either, after all that happened before the state let them live with her again...so what would be the point?

#3 Pleading no contest it is an ADMISSION of guilt, When u plead no contest, you are saying that you AGREE with the charges, and usually get a lighter sentence...Get a grip, and think before you type....

JENN
JENN

OMG...REALLY???? I cannot believe anyone would have the audacity to suggest that this woman is innocent and that these children are either lying because they hate their mother or because they themselves hurt/killed this child. The logisitcs of that don't add up at all.  Just out of curiosity, how much are Jerice's attorneys paying you to troll these sites and offer up these ludicrous statements?  I guess next you'll be suggesting that this thirteen year old CHILD jumped in her car and dumped little Jhessye's body and then forced her mother to do a thorough cleaning of the house with bleach. And btw, smart one, Jhessye is alone in all these photos because they were probably taken while her so called mother was in PRISON (you know, for the last time she abused and nearly killed one of her children) and she was being raised by cousins...not by the treachorous grandmother who had the other children.  And just to shoot down another of your theories, if the mother could not possibly be at fault, why was little Jhessye absent from school for so long. There's no mention of the 13 year old missing school.  Did she have Jerice stand-in for her and stay and torture her sister while she attended school? YOU ARE A MORON!

Bnbk
Bnbk

You need to lay off whatever it is your doing,that is making you think this way. You are making absolutlly no sense at all.

guest
guest

I 2nd that - you are an idiot

Dee Davis
Dee Davis

You are an idiot!  If your stupid logic was applied, Jerice would get off for torturing and murdering her child.  Why don't you just STFU?

Spidral75
Spidral75

Luminol works by detecting iron in blood, HOWEVER it will also react to many othersubstances such as copper or copper-containing alloys, Unfortunately bleach is one of those stubstances, as well as fecal matter. So even IF they were to utilize luminol, anywhere she cleaned with bleach could camoufladge the evidence...

This Woman has had a lot of experience, and knew what she was doing, I believe ALL her actions were pre-meditated and planned out, if this poor babies body is found, then even the death penalty is too good for her...

Living out the rest of her life in a closet  3.5ft X 4ft. Being beated with an extention cord 2X a day, giving her just enough food and water to ensure a VERY long life.. yeah THAT would be justice!

Lashaun
Lashaun

I don't know who to hate more? The mother, let me take that back the lady who gave birth to this child or the monster that birth the fool that made the stupid comment? Either one of them aren't worth dwelling on! My heart do go out to that little child you didn't deserve to be treated in such a manner. Just confirms EVIL people exist, the devil is real! I am positive that the GOD I serve snatched her spirit up immediately! Kept her from anymore pain this evil mother could render.

Lovingmotheralways
Lovingmotheralways

Btroupe78 >  I talk with the family of this poor little girl,,, when i say Family, I mean the cousins who raised her and  NOT the ones that tortured and killed her, I can tell you that while Jerice was in prison for 4 1/2 yrs. for abuse of her older child ( whom she also  almost killed but was stopped by her ex ) a few of the cousins raised Jhessye together from birth until almost age 5  They Loved Jhessye as if she were their own daughter,, and Jhessye was spoiled and treated like a little princess, , then when Jerice got out , the grandmother Shirley had police go and take Jhessye ,, ( Up until then the grandmother never even had anything to do with Jhessye, ) well Police went and ripped Jhessye away ,despite the cousins plea to keep her, Police threatened them with arrests if they didn't turn Jhessye over to the grandmother, , well no sooner the grandmother had Jhessye she gave her to Jerice ( Shirley stated she didn't want the burden) ,, and from that point it was suspected that because Jhessye wanted to go back to the cousins, whom were the only Family Jhessye knew and loved,  Jerice got jealous and  abused her,  well the cousins were informed Jhessye was being abuse and called CPS several times  , but CPS found  it "unfounded,"and before a year was up Jhessye was missing and suspected dead! ..........Shirley enabled Jerice to kill this little girl.by giving her to her , knowing Damn well that she was unfit, and they Both should get no less than torture and death themselves,         ( Oh and by the way when Jerice got arrested the first time and went to jail for 41/2 yrs, she told the Shrink that Shirley abused her ,throughout  her childhood. so the apple dont fall far from the tree,,,

smd1227
smd1227

Sorry, Malapai, Rev Al only gets involved if it's a white on black crime & he can get some air time.  He won't have a word to say about this because it's black on black.

Jason
Jason

You are a real asshole, you know that?

STFU and have a little sympathy. A 5 year old child is dead and was thrown away like a piece of garbage.

In America, life and liberty are treasured, protected and enshrined in the U.S. Constitution. You apparently do not value life.

STFU you effing criminal.

Guest
Guest

 slim shady al sharpton will not show up for this lil girl. watch and see. he could care less.

Bnbk
Bnbk

YOU ROTTEN SON OF A BITCH,THIS A INNOCENT BABY WE'RE TALKING ABOUT! YOU ARE ONE DISGUSTING ASSHOLE.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

I will assume you've already talked to the investigators in this case and shared this information with them. Sad stuff.

malapai
malapai

No, that would be you.

Guest
Guest

 actually the rotten sum bitch is the person that killed her and dumped her body somewhere not a some guy on a new times blog giving his opinions. your yelling at the wrong person.

malapai
malapai

Blow it out your ass you weaselly f-ing liberal piece of siit. Is that better?

Jason
Jason

That the best you got you fucking lowlife?

You eat shit and fucking die asshole.

Jethro
Jethro

trolls deserve love and respect to.  back in my gay days a troll was an older gay male who  went after young gay males like PTCGAZ.

Jethro
Jethro

its no wonder a 7th grade mentality atheist like you has no job or girl friend and still lives at home with his parents at 33 years old.  you write like an illiterate  punk kid retard. your an apple polisher ass kisser brown noser to.

Jethro
Jethro

or maybe your a cross eyed  inbred hillbilly who is seeing double

shadeaux14
shadeaux14

Ignore them Bnbk, they're just a couple of cowardly racists. Probably work for the MCSO.

PTCGAZ
PTCGAZ

there are so many it gets complicated. lol

Bnbk
Bnbk

Correct you are,they're trolls that are not worth responding to.

PTCGAZ
PTCGAZ

Bnbk, I think they are one and the same, but I have no way of being 100% positive. Whatever the case, they both can give each other blowjobs so we don't gotta listen to them anymore..

Guest
Guest

 I have no buddy's im a lone wolf and we are the most dangerous ones to worry about the most they say. Fuck Him and you Bbnk whatever that means.

Guest
Guest

im still correct in my other comment. i must have hit a nerve of truth with you. your still mad at the wrong person AGAIN!  

Bnbk
Bnbk

Fuck you and your Maapai buddy

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