Latest: Witness: Boy died 3 days before missing report made

AP News
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Posted: Dec 03, 2015 5:15 PM

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The latest on the case involving the arrest of an Arkansas man whose 2-year-old son went missing more than a year ago (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

Police say the ex-girlfriend of a man facing capital murder charges in the death of his son was released on her own recognizance because of medical reasons

They gave no details. Court officials say Lesley Marcotte will likely have a first court appearance Friday.

Police had said earlier Thursday that Marcotte was being booked into the White County jail on preliminary charges of hindering apprehension. District court officials say she will likely have a first appearance and bond hearing at 9 a.m. Friday.

She is charged with preventing the arrest of 43-year-old Jeffery Clifton, who is facing capital murder and abuse of a corpse charges in the death of his 2-year-old son, Malik Drummond.

Sgt. Steve Hernandez says police found what they believe is Malik's body Wednesday after Clifton agreed to lead them to the location about 100 miles northeast of Little Rock.

Malik was reported missing in November 2014, but Marcotte told police the story was fabricated. She says the boy died three days earlier from injuries after Clifton beat him. Clifton is being held without bond and court records show he is due in court for a plea and arraignment hearing on Jan. 5.

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2:15 p.m.

Affidavits for the arrest of a man in the death of his 2-year-old son who was reported missing last year do not reveal how police knew where to search for the boy's body.

Police found what they say they believe are the remains of Malik Drummond on Wednesday, about 100 miles northeast of Little Rock.

In the documents, Lesley Marcotte, the ex-girlfriend of Jeffery Clifton, says Malik died from injuries after Clifton beat him — three days before they reported the boy missing. She says one of the missing posters for the boy shows bruising from a previous beating.

Marcotte, who was arrested on preliminary charges of hindering Clifton's apprehension, told authorities he took the boy's body to work the day after he died. She told police he later borrowed an SUV from his brother to dispose of Malik's body, but she didn't know where.

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1:45 p.m.

Authorities say a witness told police that an Arkansas toddler missing for more than a year died three days before his father reported that he had disappeared.

A White County Judge agreed Thursday to unseal an affidavit filed for the arrest of 43-year-old Jeffery Clifton in the November 2014 disappearance of his 2-year-old son, Malik Drummond. Police also announced Thursday that they had arrested Clifton's ex-girlfriend, Lesley Marcotte, on a preliminary charge of hindering his apprehension.

Police found what they say they believe are the boy's remains Wednesday in an adjacent county.

Clifton was being held without bond on suspicion of capital murder and abuse of a corpse at the White County jail.

According to the documents, Marcotte, who was in the house when Malik was reported missing, told police Clifton beat the child during a dispute over eating his dinner. Marcotte said the boy died that night, and Clifton hid his body while deciding how to dispose of his remains.