(GUNTOWN, Miss.) — Two Tennessee girls missing since their mother and sister were murdered were rescued Thursday in Mississippi, where their suspected abductor apparently shot himself to death, an FBI official said.
“The girls were found alive and appear to be unharmed,” Daniel McMullen, the FBI special agent in charge for the state of Mississippi, told reporters. “Officers also apprehended top-10 fugitive Adam Mayes. Preliminary reports indicate Mayes shot himself in the head and was later pronounced dead in an area hospital.”
Units with the Mississippi Highway Patrol rescued Alexandria and Kyliyah Bain, ages 12 and 8, and found Mayes, the 35-year-old suspected of abducting them and killing their mother and sister, in a wooded area a few miles from his home in Union County, Miss., sources said.
Mayes was treated in an ambulance at the scene of his shooting and taken to a hospital around 7 p.m.
Though the girls appeared to be unharmed, they were taken to a hospital as a precaution, McMullen told reporters in Guntown, Miss., the town where Mayes lived.
Mayes’ ex-mother-in-law earlier said she believed Mayes killed the girls’ mother and her eldest daughter, and then ran away with the two girls because he believed the girls were his own children.
Josie Tate, the mother of Mayes’ ex-wife, Teresa Mayes, told ABC News affiliate WTVC that her daughter and Mayes fought often over whether Mayes was actually the father of Jo Ann Bain’s two youngest children.
Bain and her eldest daughter, Adrienne, were killed in their Tennessee home on April 27, and then taken with the two youngest daughters to Mayes’ home in Mississippi, according to police affidavits. Teresa and Adam Mayes had both been charged with murder.
After the killings of Jo Ann and Adrienne Bain, the FBI put Mayes on its Top Ten Most Wanted fugitives list.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Ray Sanchez, CNN Newswire
Chuck Johnston, CNN Newswire