One month ago, a 15-year-old boy who weighed just 80 pounds was found nearly starved to death and living in his family's barn near Meeker.

One month ago, a 15-year-old boy who weighed just 80 pounds was found nearly starved to death and living in his family's barn near Meeker.

The boy, who the community has come to know as “J.J.,” has been hospitalized for a full month now, but he is showing great improvement in his health, prosecutors said.

First Assistant District Attorney Adam Panter said the teen will likely remain hospitalized for a few more weeks.

J.J. is in protective state custody so few other details about his condition can be known, but he has undergone surgeries to remove twigs from his stomach.

The case of child neglect has captured the hearts of those in this area, the state and even nationwide.

The boy's family — his father, stepmother and two older stepbrothers — all face criminal charges in the case.

Charges — and the boy's rescue — were the result of law enforcement visiting the family home on July 12 after a passerby called authorities with concerns about the boy.

“We’re incredibly thankful that someone called ... they literally saved this child’s life,” Panter said.

Even though the family home was found to be stocked with food upon a search warrant, doctors said the boy was within a week of dying had he not been hospitalized.

He had reportedly been sleeping in a barn with farm animals at the family home and was suffering from severe malnutrition after reportedly eating twigs and leaves, Panter said.

When officers arrived at the rural residence, they saw the boy outdoors and confirmed he was the one in the DHS referral, with officers noting he appeared to be “underweight in the extreme,” arrest affidavits show.

Investigators could see the teen had a wound on the top of his head. According to the affidavit, that head wound had maggots and he told investigators his father allegedly dug those out and then covered the wound with glue.

As a result of the law enforcement visit, the boy and a 4-year-old sibling also living in the home were taken by a judge’s order into protective custody. Afterwards, the affidavit shows the starving teen spoke with officers about being coached by the adults at the home on how to deceive DHS or other parties about his welfare.

The boy hadn’t been to school in at least two years and was supposed to be home-schooled, Panter said.

While court affidavits confirm there was a DHS case referral for this child, very little information can be obtained about the role of DHS in this case.

Casey White, spokeswoman for DHS, said per state statutes, child welfare records are confidential.

More will likely come to light as the criminal cases go through the adjudication process.

The boy's father, Jimmy L. Jones Sr., 34, faces felony child neglect and child abuse by injury counts. In the child abuse by injury count, Jones is accused of shooting the teen in the leg with a shotgun, records show.

The stepmother, Amy A. Jones, 46, is charged with enabling child abuse and is accused of permitting the willful abuse of the child, identified in court documents as J.L.J.J., by failing to protect the boy from his father when he shot him in the leg with the shotgun.

The father and stepmother, along with the teen’s two other siblings, Jonathan Luke Plank, 20, and Tyler Joe Adkins, 24, are all charged with child neglect.

In that felony count, they are accused of acting conjointly with each other in the neglect of the child by failing to provide adequate food, shelter, sanitation, hygiene, appropriate education, medical and dental care for that child.

“I want to stress that each of these are very serious charges under Oklahoma law and the most serious charges we could present based on the facts, each carrying a maximum of life in prison,” Panter said.

All four are out of jail after posting various bond amounts, records show, and all have court dates for pre-preliminary hearings scheduled in October.