By The Associated Press
BOLIVAR, Tenn. — The widow of a Mississippi man accused in a Tennessee murder-kidnapping helped her husband kill a mother and her 14-year-old daughter, an indictment unsealed Thursday said.
Teresa Mayes appeared in court in Bolivar on Thursday after being indicted on two charges of first-degree murder and two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping. Authorities say Mayes hid in her car as her husband Adam Mayes abducted two young girls and killed their mother and older sister at their Whiteville home April 27.
Trial was set for May 16. A list of potential witnesses released along with the indictments covered more than 130 people, including agents, investigators and residents of Guntown.
Teresa Mayes took the girls for a ride in the couple’s Dodge Durango after their abduction, authorities said. When they returned to the home, Adam Mayes had wrapped the dead bodies of Jo Ann Bain and 14-year-old Adrienne Bain in tarps, authorities said.
The couple then drove home to Guntown, Miss., with the bodies and the surviving girls, 12-year-old Alexandria and 8-year-old Kyliyah, investigators said. Adam Mayes, 35, buried the bodies in their backyard with a borrowed shovel and escaped into the woods with the girls, according to a statement Teresa Mayes has provided investigators.
The abduction spurred a massive, multi-agency manhunt in the rugged north Mississippi woods that ended when Adam Mayes fatally shot himself May 10 as a SWAT team approached. The girls were rescued safely.
Teresa Mayes and her mother-in-law, Mary Frances Mayes, have been held in jail since their arrests in May. Mary Mayes also has been indicted in the case, charged with two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping for allegedly knowing about the abductions and not telling authorities the truth about it.
Circuit Court Judge J. Weber McCraw said a public defender will be appointed for both women. They did not enter pleas.
The indictments, which were handed down Monday by a grand jury in Hardeman County, provided little information about the details behind the charges. However, a statement made by Teresa Mayes that was read in court by a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation special agent in October said that Adam Mayes planned the abduction for a year.
She told investigators that her husband was in love with Alexandria and feared losing her because her family was planning a move to Arizona. Adam Mayes was described as a family friend of the Bains who often spent time with the girls and had a key to the home.
Teresa Mayes told authorities her husband said he hit Jo Ann Bain in the head with a board, strangled her with a rope and smothered Adrienne. He also claimed to have drugged Gary Bain, the husband and father of the family, to ensure he couldn’t stop the attack.
Adam Mayes threatened to kill his wife if she didn’t help him, the statement said.