Tags: curtis jones | prison release

Curtis Jones, 12-Year-Old Murder Convict, Released from Prison at 29

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By    |   Wednesday, 29 Jul 2015 11:30 AM

Curtis Jones, convicted of murder at age 12 along with his sister after they killed their father's girlfriend, was released from a Florida prison on Tuesday at the age of 29.

Jones departed South Bay Correctional Facility, near Lake Okeechobee, Florida, this week, while his sister, Catherine Jones, is slated to leave the Hernando Correctional Institution in a few weeks, according to Florida Today.

The newspaper wrote that Curtis Jones and Catherine Jones — who was 13 at the time of her conviction in 1999 — claimed they shot and killed Sonya Nicole Speights in their Brevard County home. They wanted to kill their father because their complaints of being sexually abused by another family member were being ignored.

In a 2009 Florida Today story, Florida State University professor and attorney Paolo Annino said Curtis and Catherine Jones lived with a violent family and that the state's Department of Children and Families did not do enough to protect them.

"This is a case, in which all the systems failed these kids," Annino told the newspaper in 2009. "They were oblivious to all the red flags. DCF is who I ultimately blame. They totally failed to properly investigate the case. If they had done that, there would not have been a murder. Instead, you have two victims that are sent to prison for 18 years."

Florida Today charged that child welfare investigators did find signs that the brother and sister had been sexually abused by a family member, but the state agency did nothing, according to documents the newspaper reviewed with the approval of Catherine Jones.

Catherine Jones told the newspaper that she debates whether time in prison served her and her brother better than continuing in the situation they were in.

"There are some times when I look back at it and wonder if this didn't happen, would we have healed to the point where we are?" she said in 2009. "Did it take something like this to happen or were there other things that could have been done? At 12 and 13, you don't know about anything else."

WFTV reported that Curtis Jones became an ordained minister while in prison, while Catherine Jones married a pen pal. The television station reported that they both learned how to drive but do not know how to use social media.



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Curtis Jones, convicted of murder at age 12 along with his sister after they killed their father's girlfriend, was released from a Florida prison on Tuesday at the age of 29.
curtis jones, prison release
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2015-30-29
Wednesday, 29 Jul 2015 11:30 AM
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