Mom of young autistic boy who went missing maintains innocence amidst chemical endangerment charges

BARBOUR COUNTY, Ala (WDHN) — A Henry County mother has pled not guilty to charges accusing her of exposing her 4-year-old autistic son to dangerous drugs before he went missing.

In February, 25-year-old Shyanne Nicole Ray was arrested and charged with two counts of chemical endangerment of a child. She pled not guilty to those charges on Wednesday, April 4.

Those charges stemmed from an investigation surrounding Ray’s son, Phenix Wilkerson, who went missing in early January in rural Barbour County for nearly two days in below-freezing temperatures.

After the investigation, state agents claimed Ray and Phenix’s father, 39-year-old Joshua Thad Wilkerson, used meth and marijuana on the day he went missing.

Wilkerson is also charged with two counts of chemical endangerment and has yet to enter a plea.

Ray and Wilkerson bonded out not long after their arrest.

After Phenix, who is non-verbal, was found in the Clayton woods, he was transported to a Barbour County Hospital, where he made a full recovery.

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