Darnell Gray death suspect makes first court appearance

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - A Jefferson City woman charged with child abuse in the death of a 4-year-old boy is asking for a public defender.

Quatavia L. Givens, 26,  was arraigned Thursday morning in front of Judge Thomas Sodergren in Cole County. Sodergren asked for a bond study, but a hearing to set bond has not been set. Givens did not enter a plea Thursday.

She is charged with a Class A felony, abuse or neglect of a child resulting in death in connection to the death of Darnell Gray. 

The charge is punishable by up to life in prison.She has been in jail without bond since Oct. 31. 

The boy's body was found Oct. 30 in Jefferson City after days of extensive search efforts by volunteers and multiple law enforcement agencies. 

Police referred to Givens as Gray's caregiver. She reported him missing Oct. 25 and told police she believed he wandered away or was taken.

Later she disclosed the location of his body and admitted she "may have hit him wrong," police said.

Givens preliminary hearing is scheduled for Nov. 15.

Police said more arrests may follow.

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