A Louisiana woman was sentenced Tuesday to 25 years in prison for her role in the death of a 5-year-old Atlanta boy whose body was found inside a suitcase in rural southern Indiana last year.
A Washington County judge sentenced Dawn Elaine Coleman, 41, of Shreveport, Louisiana, to 30 years in prison, suspended for five years. She had pled guilty to a Level 1 felony charge of conspiracy to commit murder in connection with the death of Cairo Ammar Jordan.
According to the Washington County Prosecutor’s Office, Coleman must serve at least 18 years in prison under Indiana law, which requires those convicted of a Level 1 felony to serve 75% of their sentence.
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Cairo’s body was discovered in April 2022 inside a suitcase in a wooded area about 55 miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky. An autopsy determined Cairo died of vomiting and diarrhea that led to dehydration, Indiana State Police said.
Investigators said Cairo had been dead for about a week before mushroom hunters discovered his body inside a hard suitcase decorated with Las Vegas designs.
Last June, he was buried in a cemetery in Salem, Indiana, after a memorial service in which a police chaplain called the then-unidentified child an “unknown angel.”
Authorities released Cairo’s name last year after they identified him and announced that Coleman and the boy’s mother, Dejuan Rudy Anderson, were suspects in the death.
A November 2022 felony murder arrest warrant has been issued for Anderson, but the Atlanta woman remains at large, the prosecutor’s office announced Tuesday.
Investigators determined Coleman knew Anderson and that the two women were staying at the Louisville home with Cairo. Authorities alleged that Coleman helped Anderson dispose of Cairo’s body in April 2022.
“This crime not only impacted Washington County, it made national headlines,” County Prosecutor Tara Hunt said in a news release. “The victim in this incident was an innocent child who was only 5 years old. Any time a child’s life is taken, it is tragic. It is incomprehensible that the person who should be caring for the child should be held responsible. .”