Ohio teen, adult boyfriend accused of murdering mother appear in court

Posted at 2:44 PM, April 24, 2024

TOLEDO, Ohio (Court TV) — An Ohio teenager and her adult boyfriend accused of murder were in court today for hearings in their case.

Kaitlyn Coones, 18, and Jonathon Jones, 34, are facing multiple charges for the April 2023 death of Nicole Jones, Jonathon’s mother.

combo image of man and woman in orange

(L) Jonathon Jones, (R) Kaitlyn Coones appear in court Wednesday April 24, 2024. (Court TV)

In court documents obtained by Court TV, prosecutors accuse Coones of strangling Nicole and beating her with a rock on April 19, 2023. Following the murder, Coones and Jonathon allegedly cleaned the scene and disposed of Nicole’s body in a dumpster. Afterwards, the couple fled to Mexico, where they were arrested in May. Nicole’s body has not been found.

In court Wednesday, Coones’ motion for an in-person mental evaluation was briefly mentioned. In the previously filed motion, Coones’ defense states they believe she is a victim of Jonathon and is experiencing “trauma bonding,” which “occurs when the victim has a psychological response to abuse which develops into a deep sense of affection, empathy or sympathy for their abuser.” Coones’ defense said they’re waiting for the doctor to conduct the evaluation.

Jonathon’s defense also asked for their client to be evaluated, to which the court agreed. His defense also said they intend to file a motion to suppress his interview with FBI agents in El Paso.

The judge also raised the matter of if the cases will need to be tried separately, to which Coones’ defense suggested two separate juries. The cases have not been officially severed.

The next pretrial hearing was scheduled for June 5.