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Judge grants bond to El Paso mom charged with murder of infant son

UPDATE, May 19: A central El Paso mother charged with capital murder in the death of her 7-month-old baby son was granted bond on Wednesday afternoon.

A judge set bail at $800,000 for 19-year-old Johnnette Dukes, who was being held in the downtown jail following her arrest in recent days.

Police said they found the young child "inside a laundry basket underneath piled clothing" after Dukes called 911 and said the boy disappeared while she was napping at home earlier this month. The medical examiner said the baby died of asphyxia, which is more commonly known as suffocation.

Friends and family of Dukes defended her to ABC-7 following her arrest, saying she isn't the type of person who would kill her own child.

(Johnnette Dukes, charged with capital murder.)

UPDATE, May 17: A central El Paso mother has been charged with capital murder in the death of her missing baby who was found unresponsive earlier this month.

Police on Monday confirmed the arrest of 19-year-old Johnnette Dukes, who was booked into the downtown jail for the murder of her 7-month-old son.

Back on May 8, Dukes told police she awoke from a nap and found the young boy missing; a search by officers found the child in the home at 3607 Johnson Avenue - he was "inside a laundry basket underneath piled clothing."

The child died a short time later at a hospital and the medical examiner ruled the cause of death as asphyxia, authorities indicated.

Child Protective Services told ABC-7 there was no prior history of any problems at the home - and the boy was Dukes only child.

Police said they didn't immediately have access to Dukes mugshot to publicly release, but ABC-7 obtained a copy of her jail booking photo - which you can see below.

ORIGINAL REPORT, May 8: EL PASO, Texas -- A baby reported missing Saturday was found unresponsive by El Paso police inside a home and then rushed to a local hospital, where the 7-month-old later died.

There was no word on the circumstances surrounding the disappearance and discovery by authorities in the 3600 block of Johnson Avenue in central El Paso. The baby's cause of death was also not immediately disclosed.

Detectives from EPPD's Crimes Against Persons unit were summoned to the scene around 11:30 a.m. to investigate the incident. Later, police dispatched their Crime Scene unit to the home to gather evidence in the case.

Article Topic Follows: El Paso

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Jim Parker

Jim Parker is the Director of Digital Content for ABC-7.

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