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Mother-in-law of missing Columbia woman seeks guardianship of child

Son jailed on child abuse charges
Posted: 1:38 PM, Nov 01, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-01 14:38:53-04
Mengqi Elledge
Joseph Elledge

COLUMBIA, Mo. — A woman whose daughter-in-law has been missing for three weeks and whose son is jailed on child abuse charges is seeking guardianship of her granddaughter.

Court documents show that Jean Elledge, of Blue Springs, has petitioned for custody. Her son, Joseph Elledge, of Columbia, Missouri, is jailed on $500,000 bond on charges of child abuse. He hasn't been charged in the disappearance of his wife, 28-year-old Mengqi Ji Elledge.

But charging documents say he waited about 36 hours before reporting her missing on Oct. 9. During that time, he took a long drive through unfamiliar remote areas. The abuse is alleged to have occurred several months earlier.

Jean Elledge's attorney, Garrett Taylor, didn't immediately return a phone message from The Associated Press. And no attorney is listed for her son in online court records.