Grand jury indicts mom in 4-year-old daughter's death

Posted at 2:37 PM, Aug 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-18 17:47:00-04

CINCINNATI -- The mother accused of killing her 4-year-old daughter pleaded not guilty Thursday.

A grand jury indicted Britney Mayes, 24, on one count of aggravated murder, two counts of murder and one count of child endangering in the death of Averylee Hobbs Aug. 1, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said Wednesday. If convicted of all the charges, Mayes cold face the possibility of life in prison without parole.

The judge did not set a bond for Mayes, who is pregnant again, during the arraignment Thursday.

Avery was found unresponsive in a bathtub July 29, police said. She was transported to Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, where she later died.

The coroner ruled that Avery's death was a homicide by blunt force trauma to the head.

"I am heartbroken that yet another baby's life has been taken by her own parent," Deters said. "I will never understand how a parent can intentionally cause this kind of harm to their child."

Mayes was previous convicted of attempted child endangering in 2012 for head trauma injuries to Avery when the girl was just 6 weeks old. While Mayes served her six-month sentence, Avery stayed with her grandparents. Grandmother Tammy Risen sought to keep custody of Avery and has said she thought not enough was done to protect her.