Dad to be charged with murder in death of 5 kids

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Dad to be charged with murder in death of 5 kids
Timothy Ray Jones Jr., is escorted by lawmen out of the Smith County Jail in Raleigh, Miss., Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014 to a vehicle for transport to Lexington County, S.C., where is expected to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, Tuesday, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Smith County Sheriff Charlie Crumpton, left, watches as Timothy Ray Jones Jr., is escorted by lawmen out of the Smith County Jail to a vehicle for transport to Lexington County, S.C., Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014 in Raleigh, Miss. Jones is expected to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama on Tuesday where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Timothy Ray Jones Jr., is escorted by lawmen out of the Smith County Jail to a vehicle for transport to Lexington County, S.C. on Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014 in Raleigh, Miss. Jones is expected to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama on Tuesday where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Smith County Sheriff Charlie Crumpton, speaks with reporters about the day's events surrounding the extradition of Timothy Ray Jones Jr., to South Carolina, Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014 in Raleigh, Miss. Jones is expected to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, Tuesday, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Standing outside his jail, Smith County Sheriff Charlie Crumpton, speaks with reporters about the extradition of Timothy Ray Jones Jr., to South Carolina, Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014 in Raleigh, Miss. Jones is expected to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, Tuesday, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Lexington County Sheriff Lewis McCarty, left, answers questions during a press conference about Timothy Ray Jones, who is accused of killing his five children in Lexington County and dumping the bodies in Alabama. The news conference was conducted at the Lexington County Sheriff's Department Training Center, Wed., Sept. 10, 2014 in Lexington, S.C. (Gerry Melendez/The State/MCT via Getty Images)
Photos of Timothy Ray Jones Jr. children are on display during a news conference at the Lexington County Sheriff's Dept Training Center in Lexington, S.C., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Jones Jr., 32, will be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags, a sheriff said Wednesday. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
ADDS JR. TO NAME - This Sunday, Sept. 6, 2014 photo made available by the Smith County Sheriff's Office shows Timothy Ray Jones Jr. On Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, authorities said the father of five children whose bodies were found in Alabama has been charged with child neglect and that other charges are pending. (AP Photo/Smith County Sheriff's Office)
A dirt filled area near the crime scene found on Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Authorities expect to charge a South Carolina man, 32-year-old Timothy Ray Jones Jr., in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led them to the secluded dirt road in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson said the father is suspected of killing the five children in South Carolina and dumping the bodies in Alabama.(AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Authorities gather in a fielded area surrounded by trees Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Camden, Ala. A district attorney says the bodies of five children missing from South Carolina have been found in Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
Sheriff McCarty addresses the media during a news conference at the Lexington County Sheriff's Dept Training Center in Lexington, S.C., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Timothy Ray Jones Jr., 32, will be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags, McCarty said Wednesday. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A dirt filled area near the crime scene found on Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Authorities expect to charge a South Carolina man, 32-year-old Timothy Ray Jones Jr., in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led them to the secluded dirt road in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson said the father is suspected of killing the five children in South Carolina and dumping the bodies in Alabama.(AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
An investigator leads a truck near the crime scene on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson told The Associated Press that Timothy Ray Jones Jr. is suspected of killing his children in South Carolina and leaving their bodies in a rural area near Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Photos of Timothy Ray Jones Jr. children are on display during a news conference at the Lexington County Sheriff's Dept Training Center in Lexington, S.C., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Jones Jr., 32, will be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags, a sheriff said Wednesday. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A group of investigators gather under a light near the crime scene on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson told The Associated Press that Timothy Ray Jones Jr. is suspected of killing his children in South Carolina and leaving their bodies in a rural area near Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
A helicopter flies over the scene on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson told The Associated Press that Timothy Ray Jones Jr. is suspected of killing his children in South Carolina and leaving their bodies in a rural area near Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Authorities gather in a fielded area surrounded by trees Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014,in Camden, Ala. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson told The Associated Press that Timothy Ray Jones Jr. is suspected of killing his children in South Carolina and leaving their bodies in a rural area near Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
An investigator leads a truck near the crime scene on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Camden, Ala. Wilcox County, Alabama, District Attorney Michael Jackson told The Associated Press that Timothy Ray Jones Jr. is suspected of killing his children in South Carolina and leaving their bodies in a rural area near Camden. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
Sheriff McCarty, flanked by FBI agent Dave Thomas, addresses the media, as photos of Timothy Ray Jones Jr. children are on display, during a news conference at the Lexington County Sheriff's Dept Training Center in Lexington, S.C., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Jones Jr., 32, will be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags, McCarty said Wednesday. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
Lawmen from the Lexington County Sheriff's Department in South Carolina leave the Smith County Jail in Raleigh, Miss., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014 following a short visit with Smith County Sheriff Charlie Charlie Crumpton. Lawmen from South Carolina are expected to escort Timothy Ray Jones Jr., back to South Carolina where he is to be charged with murder in the deaths of his five children after he led authorities to a secluded clearing in Alabama, Tuesday, where their bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
A view of the home of Timothy Ray Jones is shown, in Redbank, S.C. Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Authorities expect to charge Jones in connection with the deaths of his five children after he led officers to a secluded clearing in Alabama where their bodies lay wrapped in individual garbage bags. Police in South Carolina and Mississippi say Jones Jr. has been charged with child neglect and that police expect to lodge additional charges against him. (AP Photo/ Richard Shiro)
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By JEFFREY COLLINS

LEXINGTON, S.C. (AP) - A South Carolina man confessed to killing his five children, ages 1 to 8, then dumping their bodies wrapped in trash bags in a secluded clearing along a rural road in Alabama, authorities said Wednesday.

Timothy Ray Jones Jr., 32, will be charged with five counts of murder, and officials believe he acted alone, Acting Sheriff Lewis McCarty of Lexington County said. Authorities think all five children were killed at the same time, but they said they don't yet know how or why. Autopsies were scheduled to begin Thursday.

The case has unfolded over the past two weeks, covering five states and about 700 miles in what the sheriff called a "logistical nightmare." It wasn't until Tuesday afternoon - when authorities made the gruesome discovery of the children's bodies - that they went public with the case.

"We were trying to balance the children and the investigation against the releasing of information," McCarty said. "I am a police officer. I'm not a politician. My job basically is to get this job done."

Jones was stopped at a traffic checkpoint in Mississippi on Saturday, authorities said. A deputy spotted bleach, blood and children's clothes in his Cadillac Escalade. It would be another three days before the children's bodies were discovered.

He was charged with driving under the influence and possession of a controlled substance. When authorities ran his license plate, they discovered Jones and his five children had been reported missing by their mother.

Jones was taken into custody that day, and late Monday he confessed to deputies that he had killed his children and dumped their bodies, said Charlie Crumpton, sheriff of Smith County, Mississippi.


5 Kids Found Dead in Alabama, Father Detained

On Tuesday, Jones led authorities to the bodies off a dirt road in central Alabama.

Jones' father told officials his son was highly intelligent, but Crumpton said he had difficulty reading Jones' emotions during the confession. "Sometimes he was up, sometimes he was down on himself," Crumpton said.

The children were last seen Aug. 28. The older children were at school, and Jones picked up his younger kids at daycare. He was to return the children to their mother's home Sept. 2, but never showed up. Their mother, Jones' ex-wife, reported them missing Sept. 3.

State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel said authorities did not issue an Amber Alert because the case didn't meet the criteria - Jones had legal custody of his children.

On Wednesday, food and other garbage were piled up outside Jones' mobile home south of Lexington. The yard was overgrown, with broken toys strewn about.

A sign on font door said, "Is there life after death? Trespass here and find out" with a photo of a gun.

Jones - who worked as an engineer with Intel, with his 2013 divorce record showing he made more than $70,000 a year- was awaiting extradition from Mississippi on Wednesday.

The children's bodies have been brought back to South Carolina for the autopsies. Officials won't comment on any causes of death until the autopsies are completed.

The children's mother, Jones' ex-wife, is in shock and distraught, McCarty said.

"I'm sure everybody wants to know the answers," Jones' father, Timothy Jones Sr., told The Associated Press in a phone interview from Amory, Mississippi. "It's just a terrible tragedy."

"They were wonderful. They were happy," Jones' stepmother, Julie Jones said of the five children as she cried. "They were wonderful, beautiful."

___

Associated Press writers Emily Wagster Pettus in Jackson, Mississippi; Meg Kinnard in Columbia, South Carolina; and Jay Reeves in Oak Hill, Alabama, contributed to this report.

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