Mother of boy who died in abuse case pleads guilty

Posted at 11:34 PM, Jun 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-19 23:34:24-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich– A Kent County mother has pleaded guilty in connection to her son’s death.

Prosecutors say Sonja Hernandez pleaded guilty to Perjury and 2nd Degree Child Abuse this week.

Officials say Hernandez lied while under oath during the trial of her boyfriend, Elis Ortiz-Nives, who was convicted in the murder of Giovanni Meijas in December 2017. Meijas, who was the son of Hernandez, died in June 2017.

Ortiz-Nieves and his family maintain his innocence and says he woke up in the home to find Meijas unconscious and tried to revive him.  Six other children were also in the home at the time. The medical examiner later ruled Mejias’ death a homicide from fatal abdomen injuries, adding the boy had several older injuries like bruising and fractured ribs.

Giovanni Meijias (undated courtesy photo)

According to court documents, two children told Child Protective Services investigators Hernandez abused them, and she didn’t protect them from “ongoing severe violence committed by Elis Ortiz-Nieves.”

Ortiz is serving a life sentence after being convicted in Meijas’ murder.

Hernandez is scheduled to be sentenced next month.