Jennifer with her beloved mother Darnell who was shot dead in her home this weekend

Jennifer's Mother And Brother Shot Dead

25 Oct 2008

Dreamgirls star "numb" after family are gunned down in their own home

Oscar-winning actress JENNIFER HUDSON's mother and brother have been found shot dead in their Chicago, Illinois home and her seven-year-old nephew is missing.

The actress was today identifying the bodies of her 57-year-old mother DARNELL HUDSON DONNERSON and her older brother JASON HUDSON, 29, after they were gunned down I their own home on Friday.

Representatives for the 27-year-old star, who only recently announced her engagement to boyfriend DAVID OTUNGA, have said she is "numb" with shock.

Police today announced they had arrested suspect - WILLIAM BALFOUR - in the double killing, but they were still looking for the star's nephew JULIAN KING, who was taken from the crime scene.

Julian - who is the son of Jennifer's sister JULIA HUDSON - has not been seen since the killings took place.

Yesterday his distraught mother made an emotional plea for his safe return. It is believed the FBI have become involved in the case in a bid to find the youngster.

Authorities took Balfour, who was once married to the actress' sister Julia, into police custody on Friday after the victims were found.

Neighbours allegedly heard gunshots between 8am and 9am local time on the south side of the city, but emergency services weren't contacted until 3pm, when another relative, believed to be Hudson's cousin, discovered the star's mum Darnell shot in the head in the living room.

Officers subsequently found the body of her brother Jason, who had died from bullet wounds to the chest, in an upstairs bedroom.

Police launched a child abduction alert after quizzing Balfour, 27, over the whereabouts of Julia's missing son Julia.

Balfour has not yet been charged with any offence, but police spokeswoman MONIQUE BOND said the deaths appeared to be connected to domestic abuse.

Jennifer, whose song Spotlight is currently number one on the US hip-hop charts, shot to fame after appearing on U.S. TV talent show American Idol. In

2007 she went on to win an Academy Award for best supporting actress for her role in Dreamgirls.

Hudson, whose father Samuel Simpson died when she was a teenager, has described herself as very close to her family.

In a recent interview she said her family, which included older siblings Julia and Jason, helped keep her grounded.

She said: 'My faith in God and my family, they're very realistic and very normal, they're not into the whole limelight kind of thing, so when I go home to Chicago that's just another place that's home."