AJ Freund’s father sentenced to 30 years in guilty plea deal for child’s death

Chicago News
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CRYSTAL LAKE, Ill. — The father of 5-year-old AJ Freund was sentenced to 30 years in a guilty plea deal for the child’s death.

Judge Robert Wilbrandt sentenced Andrew Freund Sr. Friday to 14 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter, 11 years for aggravated battery of a child and five years for concealment of a homicidal death.

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Freund’s mother, JoAnn Cunningham, was sentenced to 35 years in prison in July for her connection to Freund’s death.

After first reporting AJ missing in April 2019, Cunningham along with Freund Sr., finally led police to the 5-year-old’s body in a shallow grave. This was after police confronted Freund Sr. with cell phone video showing the child being beaten.

Freund Sr. told police Cunningham used a shower head to hit AJ — punishing him for wetting the bed, and that he put his son’s body in a plastic tote bin, then buried him.

An autopsy revealed that the boy had been struck multiple times and died from blunt force trauma.

While some wanted to see the parents serve life sentences, the state’s attorney said Freund has been cooperative, and will work with his office in the prosecution of DCFS case worker Carlos Acosta and his supervisor Andrew Polovin, both recently charged with child endangerment.

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