The family of 9-year-old Trinity Love Jones, who was found dead in a duffle bag near an Hacienda Heights, Calif. hiking trail is one step closer to getting answers about the child’s death after her mother’s boyfriend was arrested and charged in connection with her murder.
According to KABC, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s officials confirmed on Tuesday that they have arrested 38-year-old Emiel Lamar Hunt, who has been charged with one count of murder.
Hunt, who had been previously convicted of child abuse in San Diego County in 2005, is accused of killing Trinity on or around March 1.
According to a press release from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Hunt was arrested on Saturday, March 9 after investigators found him sleeping in his vehicle, which was parked near San Diego International Airport.
He is being held on $2 million bail. If convicted of murder, he could face up to 50 years to life in prison in the case.
When he appeared in court on Tuesday, some of Trinity’s family members noted how “enraged” they were, calling Hunt a “monster.”
“Trinity was trapped with a monster,” Trinity’s uncle, Jamiel, said according to the news station, “Nobody knew.”
“How did I feel? Enraged. I felt like a monster. I wanted to do to him what he did to her, what’s alleged he did to her,” Trinity’s grandmother, Barbara Jones added.
“I just want to focus on the love of my daughter, how she was took too soon,” her father, Antonio Jones, said. “She’s an angel now.”
Hunt was one of two persons of interest who was identified by investigators who “worked tirelessly” on Trinity’s case. Authorities have so far declined to identify or give any information about the second person of interest “pending further investigation,” the sheriff’s department notes.