Mother's Compensation: $1 Million Settlement in Son's Hog-Feeding Case

Mother’s Compensation: $1 Million Settlement in Son’s Hog-Feeding Case

The state of Kansas paid $1 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the mother of a 7-year-old boy who was slain by his father and given to pigs in 2015. The lawsuit claimed that child welfare officials had neglected to step in and prevent the boy from his horrible destiny.

Following a lawsuit filed in 2017 by the mother of young Adrian Jones, her maternal grandmother, and her adult sister, the settlement was made public on Wednesday.

Before Adrian Jones passed away, the youngster was allegedly severely beaten and tortured for years by his stepmother Heather Jones and father Michael Jones.

After admitting to first-degree murder, Michael, 53, and Heather, 38, are currently serving sentences ranging from 25 years to life in prison.

According to family attorney Matt Birch, “This has been a long journey for Adrian’s family. The most important thing for the family was to hopefully make a change and make this less likely to happen in the future.”

As per the reports, Adrian’s father, Michael, was given full custody by Kansas child welfare authorities, while Adrian’s mother, Dianna Pearce, lost custody of the youngster years prior.

The lawsuits, which at the time accused the Department of Children and Families in Kansas and 10 employees of the Missouri Department of Social Services of acting as “disinterested bystanders” by refusing to act, were filed in both the Sunflower State and Missouri.

In 2020, the Missouri lawsuit was settled for a sum of money not disclosed.

In a brief public vote on Tuesday, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly and state legislative leaders authorized the settlement in the case that was originally scheduled for trial in April 2025.

Adrian was assaulted and left in a naked shower for months while being watched on camera as he withered away. Adrian was living in Kansas City with his dad, a former bail bondsman, and stepmother.

In November 2015, following a domestic abuse report to the police, his remains were discovered in a pigsty outside the house that Michael and Heather were renting.

According to mountains of documents the Kansas Department of Children and Families released, the trio frequently moved around in Missouri and Kansas, so they had no contact with the department for almost four years prior to Adrian’s death, despite the agency receiving reports of his abuse years before the child’s death.

Dinah Sykes, the minority leader in the Kansas Senate, stated on Wednesday that the reason they accepted the settlement was to avoid diverting attention from the “mission at hand,” which is to enhance the child welfare system.

Following Jones’s passing, the state enacted “Adrian’s Law” in 2021, which mandates that child protection personnel personally witness any child who is suspected of being the victim of abuse or neglect.

The law also made adjustments to assist physicians in obtaining enhanced instruction in recognizing child abuse.

With the lawsuit and the legal system, Birch and the family hope that “more eyes will be on these kids.”

According to court documents, the Joneses were charged with intensifying their severe mistreatment of the youngster in an attempt to exert control over him. This included starving him, cuffing and shocking him, and tying him to an inversion table.

Michael attempted to withdraw his guilty plea in November 2017, months after he had entered one, saying that his attorney had coerced him into doing so and that he wasn’t guilty of the offense he had confessed to.

After being found guilty of murder, he is still incarcerated.