BOLIVAR, Tenn. (AP) - The mother of a man who authorities said abducted two young girls after killing their mother and oldest sister has been charged with especially aggravated kidnapping.
Mary Mayes had faced a lesser charge of conspiracy to commit kidnapping.
According to court documents, authorities now believe that Mayes confined 12-year-old Alexandria Bain and 8-year-old Kyliyah Bain after her son and daughter-in-law took them from their Tennessee home to Mississippi.
In court on Tuesday, Mayes' attorney said he did not know specifically what his client is accused of but he speculated that prosecutors might believe she restrained the girls in some way.
Mayes' bond was increased from $300,000 to $500,000. Her preliminary hearing and that of her daughter-in-law, Teresa Mayes, was rescheduled for June 19 pending psychological evaluations of the two women.
Authorities said Adam Mayes, 35, killed Jo Ann Bain and 14-year-old Adrienne on April 27 in Whiteville, Tennessee. Mayes' wife, Teresa, is charged with murder in the killings. She told investigators she saw her husband kill the mother and oldest girl, then drove him, the younger children and the bodies to Mississippi, according to court documents.
Adam Mayes was hiding out with the girls in the woods just miles from his home in Mississippi, and some 90 miles from where the sisters were kidnapped in Tennessee. The area is frequented by hunters and dotted with deer hunting stands and other wood structures that one law enforcement official said may have been used for shelter.
An officer combing through the area spotted Alexandria Bain face down on the ground on the night of May 10 about 100 yards behind a church. They also saw the younger girl and Mayes prone on the ground. Officers yelled for Mayes to show his hands, but he got to his knees, pulled a 9mm pistol from his waistband and shot himself in the head, said Aaron T. Ford, special agent in charge of the FBI's Memphis, Tenn., office. Mayes did not said anything before shooting himself, and he did not brandish the gun toward the girls or officers.
The girls only sat up and stayed in place when Mayes shot himself, said Lt. Lee Ellington with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks.
Described as a family friend who was like an uncle to the girls, Mayes supposedly had gone to the house the night before to help the family pack for a move to Arizona. Instead, police said, he killed the mother and her oldest daughter in the garage of their home, packed their corpses into a car, grabbed the younger girls and headed south with his wife to the mobile home in Guntown. Authorities have not said how they were killed or when.
Authorities said Mayes knew Jo Ann Bain's husband, Gary, and that they at one time had been married to sisters.
Gary Bain told police that his wife and daughters were asleep when he went to bed at midnight and were gone when he awoke the next day. He figured the girls went to school and Jo Ann had gone somewhere, too. But she didn't answer her cell phone that day, April 27, and the girls never got off the school bus that afternoon.
At 8 p.m., he called the Hardeman County Sherriff's Office to report them missing.
Police interviewed Mayes, who acknowledged to investigators on April 29 that he was the last one to see Jo Ann Bain and the girls, but police said they had no evidence of a crime. And it first, it wasn't known if Jo Ann had willingly left and taken the children with her.
On April 30, Jo Ann Bain's SUV was found abandoned on a country road in Tennessee.
About 80 miles away in Mississippi, Adam Mayes was seen that same day at a market in Mississippi with his long hair chopped off. He told another customer that it would be cooler in the hot Southern summer; investigators would later warn he might have cut the girls' hair to disguise them, too.
Hardeman County Sheriff John Doolen said two days later that Mayes was a person of interest in the case but that there were no signs of foul play.
On May 4, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation issued an endangered child alert, pleading for the public's help in finding the family. Investigators still said they had no evidence of a crime.
Mayes' mother-in-law, Josie Tate, later told The Associated Press that Mayes thought the missing sisters might actually be his daughters.
On May 5, the Mississippi Highway Patrol issued an amber alert for the children, warning that Mayes was armed and dangerous. He had been charged in Tennessee with kidnapping. That same day, police announced they had found two bodies buried in the Mayes' backyard. But they were badly decomposed and not initially identified. Authorities later said the bodies were those of Jo Ann and Adrienne Bain.
By May 8, Adam Mayes' wife had been charged with murder and kidnapping in the case and his mother, Mary Mayes, had been charged with conspiracy to commit especially aggravated kidnapping. But there was still no trace of the two sisters.
Adam Mayes had been investigated in 2010 on allegations of child abuse and possessing child pornography, according to records from the Madison County Sheriff's Office in Jackson, Tenn. Mayes denied the allegations, and following an investigation that cleared him, he was never charged. The AP isn't identifying the child in the case because of the nature of the abuse allegation.
Alexandria and Kyliyah's ordeal then ended abruptly, miles from where their mother and sister had been buried. They were given water, whisked away in an ambulance, shielded by giant white sheets at the hospital so they could walk into the emergency room without the glare of news cameras.
Authorities have refused to comment on the motive for the slayings and abductions.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Wednesday, June 19 2013 2:24 PM EDT2013-06-19 18:24:42 GMT
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