JONESBORO — A Clayton County judge denied bond Sunday morning for the father and stepmother accused of keeping a 13-year-old boy hidden behind a fake wall in their home.
Atlanta’s WXIA reports that the boy was discovered Friday night in Jonesboro by Clayton County police officers after they received a tip from the child’s mother. He had been missing for nearly four years.
Gregory Jean, 37, and Samantha Joy Davis, 42, are charged with false imprisonment and child cruelty. They made their first court appearance at the Clayton County jail Sunday morning.
A previous charge of obstruction was dismissed by the judge.
Davis, the child’s stepmother, is on probation for child cruelty charges out of Henry County. She’s also accused of striking the boy with a stick across his legs, back and buttocks, causing physical harm.
The judge also mentioned concern about a 2006 arrest for Gregory Jean. The court didn’t go into details of the arrest, but did say charges were dropped.
Jean said it was a case of mistaken identity.
“They dismissed the case. That was not me,” Jean told the judge. “They had the wrong person.”
Still, the judge said prosecutors would want to research that previous arrest before granting Jean bond.
The judge also expressed his concern over the “extensive efforts” to hide the boy. He was found in a compartment of a storage closet, obscured by towels.
Jean and Davis will be back in court on Dec. 9 at 8 a.m. ET.
The boy, who is now 13, was reunited with his mother Saturday morning.