Mother obtained financial assistance for her son after the murder

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HOUSTON (AP) – A woman accused of the death of her 8-year-old son, whose skeleton remains decomposed for months in a Houston-area apartment with three surviving but abandoned siblings, continued to receive government assistance in his name even after he was allegedly beaten to death by his boyfriend, a prosecutor said on Friday.

Gloria Y. Williams, 35, remains in jail after being charged with injuring a child by omission, injuring a child (causing grievous bodily harm) and tampering with evidence (human corpse). Her boyfriend, Brian W. Coulter, 31, has been charged with murder and also remains in jail.

In a hearing Friday, Andrea Beall, a district attorney for the Harris County District Attorney’s Office, said Williams “had abandoned her three (surviving) children” and her actions showed that she was “failing in her main homework” by as a mother.

Beall said Williams received about $ 2,000 a month in government assistance for three of his children, including 8-year-old Kendrick Lee. After Kendrick’s death, Williams continued to receive help on his behalf, Beall said. Authorities have said two of Williams’ children may have autism.

Authorities allege Coulter beat Kendrick to death in front of two of the child’s siblings around Thanksgiving last year. Kendrick’s three surviving brothers, aged 7, 10 and 15, were left to fend for themselves in the apartment without furniture and were infested with cockroaches and flies after Williams and Coulter left in March, according to the reporters. authorities.

Beall said on Friday that Williams and Coulter had moved into another furnished apartment and that Williams admitted to investigators that she had moved so that she could hide her son’s body.

The surviving siblings were living with Kendrick’s remains until the 15-year-old called MPs last month.

Authorities allege Coulter also punched the 10-year-old in the jaw a few weeks before the body was found and neither he nor Williams received medical treatment.

Beall told State District Judge Kelli Johnson during Friday’s hearing that the 10-year-old’s jawbone had been infected and required reconstructive surgery.

At the request of prosecutors, Johnson increased Williams’ bail for injury to a child from $ 350,000 to $ 1 million. Williams’ obligations on the three charges now total $ 1.55 million.

Williams’ court-appointed lawyer Neal Davis III objected to his surety increase, saying it wasn’t necessary because his client couldn’t afford a $ 10,000 bond and that any increase would be oppressive.

Davis said he was named for the case just days ago and is still learning more about the allegations and Williams. He said Williams was “not really sophisticated” and that she did not fully understand the seriousness of the charges she was facing.

“I think there is more to this business than meets the eye,” Davis said.

Investigators were still searching for answers as to how these children ended up in such a “glaring” situation, Beall said.

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Follow Juan A. Lozano on Twitter: https://twitter.com/juanlozano70

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