Court docs: Brittany Gosney 'hog-tied,' gagged children before 6-year-old son's death

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Posted at 6:16 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-23 18:16:59-04

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio — Prosecutors allege Brittany Gosney, a Middletown woman charged with murder in connection to the death of her 6-year-old son, “hog-tied” and gagged her three children for several hours on the day before his death.

According to a bill of particulars — a document providing detailed descriptions of the charges against a defendant — filed in the Butler County Court of Common Pleas Monday afternoon, the children were tied up and gagged on Feb. 25 or 26. The bill does not specify how much time passed between the incident and the death of 6-year-old James Hutchinson.

But police and prosecutors have stated Gosney had been intending to abandon all three of them — Hutchinson and his older brother and sister — when she drove them to Rush Run Wildlife Area in rural Preble County, 30 minutes away from their Middletown home, on Feb. 26.

RELATED: No death penalty possible in case of Middletown 6-year-old’s death and disposal. Here’s why.

A Preble County Sheriff’s Office report said Gosney later claimed she was under pressure from her boyfriend, James Hamilton, to get rid of the children.

Middletown police reported she confessed to leaving the children in the Rush Run parking lot that day and driving away. When Hutchinson chased her and held onto her car, she kept driving until he let go. Prosecutors believe she might have run him over in the process, but his cause of death has not been determined because authorities have yet to locate his body.

Hutchinson was dead by the time Gosney turned around and returned to the lot several minutes later. She loaded his body into her car alongside his living siblings and drove back home to Middletown, where she and Hamilton concealed the first-grader’s body in their house for nearly 48 hours.

According to court documents, they took the body an hour away to Lawrenceburg, Indiana, and dumped it in the Ohio River on Feb. 28.

They would attempt to report Hutchinson missing shortly afterward. Middletown police were immediately suspicious of their story because they could not agree on when they had last seen him, according to chief Maj. David Birk. The pair were arrested, and Gosney confessed to causing Hutchinson's death.

Hamilton and Gosney face a combined 31 charges, including murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, endangering children and tampering with evidence.

Gosney’s defense has entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity, and a judge on Monday ordered a competency evaluation to determine whether she is capable of assisting in her own defense.