Ernesto Gonzalez, 38, of Lynn is being held without bail in connection with five-year-old Giovanni Gonzalez’s disappearance.
In Essex Superior Court Christopher Skinner, Gonzalez’s defense attorney, asked the judge for a conference on December 29 to discuss a possible plea agreement.
It is unclear whether the District Attorney will accept a plea.
Giovanni was dropped off by his mother Daisy Colon at his father’s Brightwood Terrace apartment in Lynn on Friday, August 15 2008. That was the last time Colon saw her son, and since then, has made several distraught pleas for the boy’s safe return.
In November 2008, right before Colon was to mark her first Thanksgiving holiday without her son, Gonzalez dropped a cruel bombshell. The elder Gonzalez told a Boston Globe reporter he had in fact killed his son, chopped him up in his Lynn apartment, placed his body in trash bags and then distributed the bags around Lynn to various dumpsters throughout the city.
Gonzalez’s told the Globe that his son was ‘behaving badly’ and next thing he knew he was stabbing the boy. He then dismembered Giovanni’s body in his bathtub, put the pieces in trash bags and then rode around on his bike later in the afternoon disposing of the remains in various dumpsters in Lynn.
If the confession holds Gonzalez will sure to become one of Lynn’s ugliest murderers in years, a man so heartless and unfeeling that he could cut his son into pieces.
The confession was doubted at first by Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett.
Blodgett said Gonzalez’s version of events does not match forensic evidence found at the scene and experts would say that dismembering a body in a bathtub–no matter how good you cleaned up after–there would be traces of blood and other evidence left behind. Also, witnesses and neighbors at the Brightwood Terrace apartment complex said they heard a boy’s laughter coming from Gonzalez’s apartment after Gonzalez supposedly already killed his son.
A week before the confession, Gonzalez asked the court to drop the charges against him.
Since Gonzalez’s arrest, police found items in his apartment that were apparently stained with blood. The items included a mop, a bottle of pine cleaner, and a knife that all tested positive for blood. It was an ominous find by investigators as they obtained a search warrant to search Gonzalez’s Lynn home further.
However, initial lab results that tested the mop and other items from the apartment were sent back to investigators, and since their return, there has been a shift in attitude and the search for Giovanni. They said the blood was not a match.
At one point, police used cadaver-sniffing dogs to search Pine Grove Cemetery in Lynn. However, after tests were conducted on the mop, investigators said they were revisiting their original search for the boy to see if they missed any evidence or leads about his whereabouts the first time around. The boy’s father was a meat butcher by trade.
Recently though, the District Attorney office said further tests revealed the boys blood on a knife and a bathroom threshold.
Colon told police she brought her son to visit his father that Friday as part of an unofficial custody arrangement. She returned to pick him up two days later and the father wouldn’t answer the door.
Police were called to the apartment and found Gonzalez inside alone, nursing a cut to his hand. He told police he hadn’t seen the boy and was uncooperative. Police later learned that at least one witness saw Gonzalez with Giovanni on Saturday, August 16.
Ernesto Gonzalez was arrested and charged with child endangerment.
Giovanni’s disappearance sparked a massive search for the boy that included the FBI, Lynn and State Police. Roadblocks were established throughout Lynn so law enforcement agents could hand out information and flyers with a picture and description of the child.
The boy’s mother has also raised a $7,000 reward and hopes that will begin to bring new clues and leads to the disappearance of the boy. The $7,000 reward will be given to anyone who can lead police to Giovanni’s whereabouts.
Colon raised $2,000 with the help of friends and family and the Carole Sund-Carrington Foundation of Modesto, Calif., has offered an additional $5,000.00, bringing the total reward amount to $7,000.00.
Anyone with information about Giovanni Gonzalez is urged to call Lynn Police at 781-595-2000.