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Reward being offered for couple charged in 4-year-old's murder after failing to show up in court

Posted: 11:33 AM, Feb 11, 2019
Updated: 2019-02-11 11:33:08-05
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CLEVELAND — A couple charged in the death of a 4-year-old boy found dumped in the backyard on Longmead Avenue in Cleveland have been named as the Fugitives of the Week by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Office and the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force.

Joanna Vega and Romaine Tolbert are facing a list of charges including murder, gross abuse of corpse, child endangering, permitting child abuse, tampering with evidence and kidnapping in connection with the death of Vega’s godson, 4-year-old Eliazar Ruiz.

RELATED: Couple charged in 4-year-old's murder fail to show up in court

In September 2017, the remains of Ruiz were found stuffed in a garbage bag tucked under shrubs on Longmead Avenue. An autopsy was unable to determine the cause of death but it was ruled a homicide.

On Jan. 29, the pair failed to show up for their first court appearance. Tolbert and Vega have been on the run since.

RELATED: Young boy whose remains were found behind west side Cleveland home identified

The U.S. Marshals and the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force are offering a $2,500 reward for information that could lead to their arrest.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Northern Ohio Fugitive Task Force at 1-866-4WANTED or text keyword WANTED and tip to 847411. Callers can remain anonymous.