2 defendants ordered to stand trial in Joplin child abuse cases

·1 min read

Sep. 18—Two defendants waived preliminary hearings Thursday in separate felony child abuse cases in Jasper County Circuit Court and were ordered to stand trial.

Jennifer L. Duarte, 35, of Webb City, waived the hearing on a charge stemming from an incident May 5, 2020, when she purportedly became intoxicated and belligerent while visiting a friend on East Bakers Branch Drive in Joplin.

A probable-cause affidavit states that the friend attempted to keep Duarte from driving with her three children in the vehicle, which made her angry to the point that her children became frightened. According to the affidavit, a child of the friend was standing between Duarte and one of her children when Duarte cursed her and hit her in the face.

Judge Joe Hensley set Duarte's initial appearance in a trial division of the court for Nov. 1.

Aaron R. Gilmore, 40, of Joplin, waived his hearing on a charge related to an incident March 31 involving an assault of his adopted son.

A probable-cause affidavit states that police were called to North Middle School when the 12-year-old boy showed up at school with a bump and bruise on his head and told a school counselor that his father had slammed his head down on a countertop and threw him to the floor.

According to the affidavit, a city detective noticed a video camera in the kitchen of the family's home while investigating the matter and discovered video of the incident. The video purportedly showed Gilmore slamming the boy's head down on the counter about four times.

The judge set Gilmore's initial appearance in a trial division for Oct. 6.

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