Commonwealth v. Shaniqua Jones; Judge Imposes Sentence of 13 Years, 6 Months for Mother’s Role in Baby’s Death

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Harvey L. Bryant, Commonwealth’s Attorney for the City of Virginia Beach, announced that Shaniqua Jones, 22 years old, previously residing in the 1300 block of Pine Cone Circle in Virginia Beach, Virginia, was formally sentenced today by Circuit Court William R. O’Brien on charges of Second Degree Felony Murder and Child Abuse/Neglect.    Jones was previously convicted by a jury on May 9, 2013, and the jury fixed her punishment at 13 years and six (6) months in prison. Judge O’Brien, who presided over the three-day jury trial, formally imposed that sentence today. 


The Commonwealth’s evidence proved that on November 27, 2011, 19-month-old Kimauri Williams was brought to Virginia Beach General Hospital by his mother, Shaniqua Jones, and her live-in boyfriend, Alvin Gatewood. Despite the fact that Kimauri was not breathing and his body was limp, Gatewood and Jones parked their car, casually strolled into the hospital, and filled out paperwork.  Neither Gatewood nor Kimauri’s mother yelled for help or indicated to the hospital staff that the baby needed emergency care. The first nurse to examine Kimauri immediately recognized that he was dead or dying and directed the couple to rush Kimauri to a treatment room. Kimauri was pronounced deceased at the hospital.  He had severe bruising all over his body due to multiple beatings over multiple days. An autopsy revealed the cause of death was blunt force trauma to the abdomen with contributing head trauma. 


Detectives with the Virginia Beach Police Department began investigating Kimauri’s death.  Through the investigation, they learned that Alvin Gatewood had been responsible for the vast majority of Kimauri’s care in the days leading up to his death.  In the hours leading up to his death, Kimauri was vomiting, crying, and could not stand up without being supported.  Neither Alvin Gatewood nor Shaniqua Jones sought medical treatment for him during this time.   


Gatewood was found guilty by a jury of Second Degree Felony Murder and Child Abuse/Neglect, for which he is serving 40 years in prison.  


Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Philip C. Hollowell and Associate Commonwealth’s Attorney Kristin L. Paulding prosecuted the case. Please contact Macie Pridgen if additional information is desired.