(WMC-TV) - There are two sides to every story, and in a chilling story that gripped the Mid-South last year ... even more than that.
For the first time, Teresa and Mary Mayes, wife and mother of a man who murdered and kidnapped members of a Mid-South family, tell their side of a tragic story from prison.
Nineteen months ago a family friend kidnapped two Mid-South girls after he murdered their mother and sister. That family friend was Adam Mayes. The kidnapping of Alexandria and Kyliah Bain from their home in Whiteville led to a manhunt across Tennessee and Mississippi.
The Bain family was planning to move to Arizona, and Adam Mayes was determined to stop them. Part of his plan included recruiting his own mother and wife to help.
"How can you put two children in a car with their mother and sister dead in the back of it?" said Mary Mayes, Adam's mother. "I know it sounds funny to be afraid of your son, but I was afraid of him."
Teresa Mayes was Adam Mayes' wife.
"Living with Adam, yeah, it was like living in hell," said Teresa.
Action News 5's Justin Hanson sat down with both women inside the Tennessee Prison for Women in Nashville. He asked them to explain why they went along with such a heinous plan.
"We left the house, it was like April 25, early in the morning. He said, 'We're going to Whiteville, no questions asked. If you start asking questions, I'm going to kill you,' " explained Teresa.
Teresa Mayes says she did not know her husband planned to kill Jo Ann Bain and her daughter, Adrienne, but she did know he intended to kidnap two of Bain's daughters.
"He was like, 'We're gonna kidnap them before they get on the school bus because Gary and Jo Ann don't watch them get on the bus,'" Teresa recalled.
She went on to explain that she hid under a blanket in Mayes' truck for almost two days while he visited the Bain family. She says she was ordered to stay out of sight by her husband and that the family never knew she was on their property.
"I kinda wiggled a little bit and he comes to the Durago. He says, 'I told you to be still.' I said, 'My nose is bleeding. I've done got way too hot in this vehicle.' [He says], 'Oh, it's gonna be taken care of here in a little bit,'" said Teresa.
Teresa says between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. on April 27, Adam came to the truck with 12-year-old Alexandria and 8-year-old Kyliyah Bain.
He told Teresa to drive off the property and keep the sisters hidden. Teresa says she returned to the property with the girls less than two hours later.
"He tells me to come in the shop. I go in the shop and there's two tarps laying on the shop floor," said Teresa.
Inside the tarps were the bodies of Jo Ann and Adrienne.
"He tells me, 'You're gonna help me put these in the Durango.' I'm like, 'No, I'm not. I'm not touching nothing. I told you I don't want no involvement in none of this.' He was like, 'If you don't do it, I'm gonna kill you,' " she said.
Teresa says she did not know what was inside the tarps as Adam placed them in the seat in front of the two sisters. She says she along with the girls never saw the bodies.
"At that time, I didn't know what it was until we get to Mississippi and he confesses to me that was Jo Ann and Adrienne," said Teresa. "He was like, 'I killed Jo Ann' and he told me how he killed her. He said he hit her in the head with a board and then he strangled her. He was like I killed Adrienne and when he said Adrienne, I come unglued. I couldn't even hear how he did it. I didn't want to know how he did it."
Teresa says Adam got into Jo Ann's SUV and drove it to a nearby field, where Teresa picked him up and began the trip to Adam's parents Mary and Johnny Mayes' home in Alpine, Mississippi.
For two hours only a row of seats separated the Bain girls from their dead mother and sister.
"I'm sitting there the whole time going, 'Y'all can uncover. Get up in there in the seat ... Kyliyah was [scared] Alex wasn't. Kylie starts crying I want mamma, I want Adrienne," said Teresa.
Teresa said they arrived at Adam's parent's home in Guntown, Mississippi around 6 a.m. With the girls still hiding under blankets, Adam dug a grave in the backyard and buried Joann and Adrienne.
"I didn't know they were in there. I didn't know they were in the ground. I'd walked back and forth over that thing feeding our animals out there," said Mary Mayes.
Adam moved Alexandria and Kyliyah to a trailer near Pontotoc, Mississippi, about 35 miles from his parent's home.
Gary Bain immediately reported his family missing and Hardeman County Sheriff John Doolen questioned Adam Mayes on April 29. Mary Mayes says Adam was armed and ready to fight.
"He carried that 9 millimeter gun around, even when Doolen was down there questioning him and telling him he was the last person to see everybody, he had that 9 millimeter tucked in the back of his pants," said Mary.
Mary says Adam was violent, even as a child. She said he would hit her and his father, Johnny, and often lock them in the bathroom. That is why she says she kept quiet and did what she was told when Adam asked her to pick up the Bain sisters from his trailer 30 miles away.
"He came to the house and said, 'Go get them.' He put his old toolbox on his little red truck and he put a blanket in there and I couldn't figure out why but he says, 'You go get them. Don't stop nowhere between here and there and don't make no phone calls,'" Mary explained. "I went over there and knocked on the door and they came to the door. There wasn't no water, no electricity and I said, 'Adam says y'all know what to do,' and they say, ‘ Yes ma'am.' They got in the toolbox and let the lid down. And I didn't stop between where they were at. They said, 'Why didn't you take them to police?' I didn't now Johnny wasn't gonna be dead when I got to the house."
Mary said she then took the girls to meet Adam in a wooded area near a church.
"I pulled over, he says, 'Don't get out.' He tapped on the toolbox and Alex and Kyliyah jumped out and took off," said Mary.
Investigators issued a warrant for Adam's arrest on May 2, six days after the Bain girls disappeared.
On May 5, Mary Mayes led authorities to the spot where she had seen Adam digging the week before.
"Whenever the FBI said asked if he'd done anything unusual, I went out there and showed them where he had dug," said Mary.
Teresa said she warned authorities that Adam would not go down without a fight.
"Y'all don't know him like I do. He will come back and kill us. I guarantee you he's sitting in them woods now watching y'all," Mary said she told authorities.
It was in those woods where wildlife agents surrounded Adam Mayes and the Bain sisters on May 10. The manhunt ended when Mayes shot himself in the head.
"I had a girl there last night. She asked me, she said, 'Didn't your husband shoot himself?' She was like, 'I'm so sorry.' I'm like, 'Please don't, please don't be sorry.' I feel sorry that the girls lost their momma and one of their sisters," Teresa said through tears. "If I could go back and change everything that happened, would I? Yes."
Doctors at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital treated the Bain sisters for dehydration, cuts, bruises and poison ivy when they were found. They are now back in Whiteville with their father Gary.
Teresa Mayes pleaded guilty to two counts of second degree murder and two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping. Mary Mayes also pleaded guilty to two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping.
"I know he did wrong, and I don't know what brought it on, but he's still my son and I can't ... people say how can you do that? I say you're not a mother are you?" said Mary Mayes.
Based on good behavior, Teresa Mayes could be eligible for parole after serving almost 30 of her 35 year sentence. Mary could be eligible after serving 11 and a half of her 13 and a half year sentence.
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