Body From SUV Is Jennifer Hudson's Nephew

Authorities have confirmed the body found in the back of an SUV on Monday is that of actress Jennifer Hudson's 7-year-old nephew.

The body was taken to the Cook County Medical Examiner's office just before noon, and family members arrived around 3 p.m. to identify the boy.  Jennifer Hudson, two of the boy's aunts and an uncle identified the body as that of Julian King, according to police.

An Amber Alert had been issued for the boy after a shooting Friday afternoon that left the actress' mother and brother dead.  A massive search for the boy ended tragically when police discovered the body inside an SUV on the West Side. The Amber Alert issued Friday for Julian was canceled shortly after the body was found Monday morning.

The boy's body was found on the floor in front of the SUV's middle row of seats, covered up with heavy plastic and other items to conceal the body, a police source told NBC Chicago.  The boy appeared to have been shot in the back of the head, the source said.  An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday.

Chicago Police Superintendant Jody Weis said the investigation is ongoing.  No charges have been filed.

The white SUV found was parked in the 1300 block of South Kolin Ave. Monday morning with the boy's body inside.  Police blocked off the area, a considerable distance from the Englewood home of Hudson's family, where the actress' mother and brother were found shot to death on Friday.   Julian was the son of Jennifer Hudson's sister, Julia Hudson

Darnell Donerson, 57, and Jason Hudson, 29, were shot and killed Friday morning around 11 a.m., according to police. Autopsies by the Cook County Medical Examiner show the victims died from multiple gun shot wounds. 

At about 9 a.m. Monday, the SUV with a license plate number matching that of the one issued during Friday's Amber Alert was towed to Chicago Police Area 5 Headquarters for further examination. The SUV is registered to Jennifer Hudson's slain brother.  

The Police Department issued a statement at about 10:30 a.m. Monday saying that the 1994 white Chevy Suburban was found at 1313 S. Kolin with the body of a boy in the back seat.   Police said they believe the SUV had been parked on Kolin Avenue since Friday.  The boy's body appeared to have been inside the vehicle since then.

Jennifer Hudson had offered a $100,000 reward over the weekendfor the safe return of Julian.  She also issued a plea in a blog entry on her Myspace page.

"Thank you all for your prayers and your calls," she wrote. "Please keep praying for our family and that we get Julian King back home safely."  

"Thank you all for being there for us through this tough time."

The search for Hudson's 7-year-old nephew intensified Sunday as FBI, police and members of the Englewood community joined the effort.

Authorities issued an Amber Alert for Julian and his stepfather, William Balfour, who was Julia Hudson's estranged husband.  Police tracked down and arrested Balfour at a Southwest Side apartment just hours after the bodies were discovered by Julia. The boy was not with Balfour. 

Police later transferred custody of Balfour to the state on an unrelated parole violation. He has not been charged.

Julia Hudson made a plea for her son's safe return Saturday at the Pleasant Gift Missionary Baptist Church, where the family held a private prayer service. 

"I want my baby back," Julia Hudson said as she fought back tears.  "He's out there. Just let him go."

Speaking directly to her son, she said "I love you. Mama's looking for you."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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