News - McHenry County

Attorneys await psychiatric evaluation, DNA samples from AJ’s parents

JoAnn Cunningham and Andrew Freund are charged in their son's murder.

The Crystal Lake parents charged with killing their 5-year-old son made brief appearances in court Tuesday, each surrounded by added security, as results of a psychiatric evaluation are pending and prosecutors motion for “scientific evidence.”

Andrew Freund Sr., 60, and JoAnn Cunningham, 36, each are being held in the McHenry County Jail on $5 million bond, charged with the murder of their son, AJ Freund.

Authorities said the parents made the child stand in an ice-cold shower April 15 and beat him to death. Freund made a false 911 call on the morning of April 18 reporting his son missing. His body was found about a week later, buried in a shallow grave in Woodstock.

Several detectives who worked the case were present in the courtroom as each defendant made their appearance. At the same time, a group gathered outside the courthouse in an attempt to influence change within the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and the judicial system.

Henry Sugden, Freund’s attorney, told Judge Robert Wilbrandt they still were awaiting results from a psychiatric evaluation for his client.

Cunningham gave birth to a baby girl May 31, who now is in protective custody with DCFS, as is Cunningham’s 4-year-old son.

Prosecutors motioned for what they called “scientific evidence,” which refers to finger prints and hair and blood samples from each parent.

The couple is due back in court July 16.

Amanda Marrazzo

Amanda Marrazzo is a staff reporter for Shaw Media who has written stories on just about every topic in the Northwest Suburbs including McHenry County for nearly 20 years.