GEORGETOWN, OH (FOX19) - Brown County authorities confirmed Thursday they lost an appeal to hold onto the vehicle Brittany Stykes was shot dead in nearly five years ago.
Prosecutor Zac Corbin said the investigation is continuing to move forward as they explore all legal options to keep the Jeep.
They have until Oct. 1 to stop its release to Brittany's husband, Shane Stykes.
Corbin and Brown County Sheriff Gordon Ellis long have maintained the Jeep was the murder scene.
Brittany, 22, was four months pregnant when she was shot and killed as she drove the Jeep down Ohio 68 north of Ripley on Aug. 28, 2013.
Her 14-month-old daughter, Aubree, was in the vehicle and was shot in the head. The toddler survived.
Once the shooter is arrested and prosecuted, Corbin said the vehicle may be needed to clarify ballistic information and more.
The Jeep was recently sent to Ohio's Bureau of Criminal Investigation to undergo 3-D photographing and scanning.
Once it's released to Shane, Corbin said it's unlikely authorities will be able to collect further evidence from it.
Meanwhile, Brittany's father, David Dodd, tells FOX19 NOW he can't imagine why Shane would want to drive the couple's daughter around in the same vehicle in which her mother was gunned down and she nearly was killed.
A $20,000 reward is still available for information that leads to the apprehension and conviction of the shooter.
Tuesday is the fifth anniversary of Brittany Stykes' homicide.