Posted: October 27, 2008 at 7:40 am
UPDATE: This story gets more tragic by the day. Police have confirmed the body of the child found in the suv is indeed Jennifer’s 7-year-old Nephew. (video)
CHICAGO – Police searching for Jennifer Hudson’s missing 7-year-old nephew found the body of a young black boy in an SUV Monday. There was no confirmation on the identity of the body.
Hudson’s nephew, Julian King, hasn’t been seen since Friday, when Hudson’s mother and brother were found shot to death in their home. Police issued an Amber Alert for Julian, who lived in the home, and were looking for a 1994 white Chevrolet Suburban.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s office and Chicago Police Department sent officials to the scene of a white SUV, which reportedly has a license plate matching the number listed on an Amber Alert issued for Jennifer Hudson’s missing nephew, on the city’s West Side Monday. Police refused to comment.
Television footage showed police vehicles escorting a flatbed tow truck as it took the SUV away from the scene with the body still inside. Hudson, the Oscar-winning actress offered a $100,000 reward for her nephew’s safe return. He is the son of her sister, Julia Hudson.
The Amber Alert listed William Balfour, the estranged husband of Julia Hudson, as a suspect in a “double homicide investigation.” Balfour, 27, has not been charged in the slayings. He is not the boy’s father. Police said they did not have a motive for the killings but called the case “domestic related.” Balfour was taken into custody Friday by Chicago police for questioning in the killings. On Sunday, he was transferred to the Illinois Department of Corrections “based on his active parole violation unrelated to this investigation.”
Records from the Corrections Department show Balfour is on parole and spent nearly seven years in prison for attempted murder, vehicular hijacking and possessing a stolen vehicle. Corrections spokeswoman Januari Smith said Balfour would probably remain in state custody until the Illinois Prisoner Review Board looked at his case. She would not say where Balfour was being held. It was unclear whether Balfour had an attorney Sunday, but his mother, Michele Balfour, has denied he was involved the killings or in Julian’s disappearance.
On Sunday evening, in a statement from publicist Lisa Kasteler, the singer appealed to the public for help, offering the reward and asking any information be given to Chicago police. “Jennifer and her family appreciate the enormous amount of love, support and prayers they have received while she and her family try to cope with this tragedy and continue the search for Julian,” the statement said.
Hudson, who won an Academy Award for best supporting actress in 2007 for her role in “Dreamgirls,” was in Chicago with her family during the weekend, her sister said. The medical examiner’s office confirmed Hudson identified the bodies of her mother, Darnell Donerson, 57, and 29-year-old brother, Jason Hudson. The deaths were ruled homicides.