A man is in custody on suspicion of killing his boyfriend in January after the victim’s sister found her brother’s dead body earlier this week.
Peoria police report Christopher Michael Jones, 26, was arrested Wednesday on one count of second-degree murder.
On Tuesday afternoon, police were made aware of a dead body at a home in the 7300 block of West Montgomery Road, east of the Peoria Regional Preserve and north of 67th Avenue and Happy Valley Road.
Records state the victim’s sister had obtained keys to enter the home from another sibling in Texas after a welfare check by police had no luck Feb. 13. On Tuesday, she found a dead body she believed was her brother and then called police.
Officers found a male covered with a large comforter. The body showed signs of decomposition, and police believe the man had been dead at least two weeks.
Police found evidence of a fight and an ensuing cleanup at the residence. Other evidence led them to believe the victim was murdered by someone who knew him. Officers found a debit card belonging to Christopher Jones in the victim’s pocket.
Officers on Wednesday learned Mr. Jones had checked himself into a behavioral health center on Feb. 14. Police served a search warrant on Mr. Jones, and were initially going to let him go afterwards when he admitted to killing the victim, records state.
“The two were involved in an argument because Christopher believed the male victim was trying to poison him,” a probable cause statement reads.
Mr. Jones allegedly struck the victim several times in the head with a flashlight, then wrapped a power cord around the victim’s neck and killed him, records state.
Mr. Jones showered, cleaned up some of the house and covered his boyfriend with a blanket out of “shame” for what he had done. He then left in an Uber.
Mr. Jones did not indicate a specific date of the homicide but told police it likely occurred about two days before Feb. 1.
Records state family members requested a welfare check Feb. 13. Officers had “checked the house and were unable to contact the male victim.”
An email was sent to Peoria police asking if officers actually entered the house on that day.
“We did not have a reason to enter the home during the welfare check,” Officer Brandon Sheffert stated. “We simply check the outside and attempt to make contact with the residents.”
Police have only identified the victim as a 59-year-old male.
Police state they have responded to the Sonoran Mountain Ranch residence 27 times since 2017. In some of the responses, Mr. Jones had been arrested for domestic violence assault. The couple had a history of abusing alcohol and drugs, including methamphetamine, records state.
Mr. Jones was placed into a safe cell, according to his release orders. While Mr. Jones was not transported to court for his initial appearance, Judge Utiki Spurling Laing set his bond at $1 million. His next court appearances are Feb. 28 and March 4.