Robert Manwill's Mother and Her Boyfriend Charged with Murder

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Daniel Ehrlick
  • Ada County Jail
  • Daniel Ehrlick
Melissa Jenkins
  • Ada County Jail
  • Melissa Jenkins
A Grand Jury indictment read this morning in Ada County Court alleges that Melissa Scott Jenkins, 30, and Daniel Edward Ehrlick, 36, killed 8-year-old Robert Manwill after subjecting the boy to beatings and torture for a prolonged period of time, culminating in his death on July 24, the same day he was reported missing.

Jenkins and Ehrlick were arrested yesterday. According to the Idaho Statesman, the indictment alleges that Ehrlick "with the intent to cause suffering, to execute vengeance or to satisfy some sadistic inclination by inflicting on Robert G. Manwill extreme or prolonged acts of brutality with the intent to cause suffering." It also states that Jenkins, the boy's mother, had full knowledge of the beatings and hid Manwill from authorities.

The Statesman
has a full account of the couples' checkered past this morning.

Here's one disturbing snippet from the Statesman story:

Outwardly, to many neighbors, family and friends, Ehrlick and Jenkins seemed like good parents-even after Jenkins pleaded guilty to fracturing her infant's skull in October 2008.

In interviews days before the two were arrested Tuesday night, several of the couple's closest neighbors at the Oak Park Village apartments praised Ehrlick as an easy-going "Mr. Mom," the one who always carried the baby and diaper bag.

"He was very good with the baby," said Sean Buffington, who lives upstairs from the couple.

"He made sure that baby had clean clothes," Ehrlick Sr. said. "He made sure that baby had food. He made sure the baby had diapers. He would not leave that boy more than two or three minutes because he'd worry about him."

You can hear the indictment live at KTVB-TV [scroll down to the video player]. Maggie O'Mara's Behind the Scene blog recalls how Jenkins and Ehrlick appeared at all of the briefings while thousands of people searched for Manwill. She also reminds readers that the charges have yet to be subject to a jury and remain just that: allegations.

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