Mother Of 3-Year-Old Killed In 2018 Apartment Fire Files Lawsuit Against Foster Mom, Roommate

By WBBM Newsradio 780 AM & 105.9 FM

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- It was two years ago - almost to the day - that a 3-year-old boy died in a fire in the South Shore neighborhood. Now his mother is suing the boy’s foster mother for negligence.

Shanette Roach filed the wrongful death lawsuit Tuesday in Cook County Circuit Court. The boy died July 8, 2018, after being left in a burning apartment in the 1400 block of East 67th Place by an adult who escaped and didn’t know the child was there, authorities said at the time.

The apartment was where 3-year-old Maqkwone Jones was living with his foster mother - who had custody at the time - and with one of many female roommates that rotated through her door, as attorney Stephanie White describes it.

White said there was a party in the home, a fight, and then the foster mother left; and 3-year-old Maqkwone was still in his room. 

"A fire broke out after the foster mother left him unattended, or not properly supervised, and Maqkwone was unable to escape the building that burned," White said.

Attorney White is representing Maqkwone's mother who is suing the foster mother, the roommate, and in a separate lawsuit DCFS.

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According to the lawsuit, the foster mother, who is related to Roach, was given custody of the boy and his three siblings in 2017. According to the Sun-Times, the suit claims DCFS failed to properly screen the backgrounds of the foster mother’s roommates or properly investigate reports of drug use in the home and the children being left with improper supervision.

The suit also states that the door to the children’s bedroom was modified to lock from the outside so the foster mother and roommate “could host house parties fueled by drugs, alcohol, loud music and violence throughout the night.”

The lawsuit is seeking at least $100,000 in damages, as well as court costs and other fees.