Fight for justice continues three years after little girl’s murder

Three years ago, a little girl was murdered. Police say she died at the hands of her own mother.
Updated: Jul. 29, 2019 at 10:32 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI, Ohio (FOX19) - These days, Averylee Hobbs’ loved ones say they’re still fighting for justice.

Britney Mayes is accused of killing her 4-year-old daughter, Averylee, in July 2016. Today, Mayes remains at the Hamilton County Justice Center.

Averylee’s family members say they want to see Mayes prosecuted and put in prison sooner rather than later, but the system is moving slowly.

“She was just an amazing child,” said Jamie Hobbs, Averylee’s father. “Just walked into a room and everybody’s happy.”

Jamie Hobbs’ life changed forever when his daughter was found unresponsive in a West Price Hill bathroom. Police later called it murder by way of blunt force trauma to the head. They said Mayes, the child’s mother, was responsible.

Mayes had been in trouble for child endangerment before.

As the days have gone by, Averylee’s loved ones have been doing what they can to celebrate her life, although it is not easy. Jamie Hobbs says knowing Mayes has not been convicted makes it even harder.

Court records show Mayes has repeatedly filed continuances, delaying her criminal trial for three years.

“You get that feeling that something good is finally going to come out of it, and then, three years later, you’re still waiting, and nothing’s happening. I mean, it’s tearing my family apart. It’s tearing my friends apart," said Jamie Hobbs.

Hobbs said he wants Mayes to pay the price for what she has done and is tired of waiting for justice. He says an overflow of community support from strangers, friends, and family is what has helped him make it through.

FOX19 NOW reached out to the Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office to ask about why the trial has been repeatedly delayed.

A spokesperson for the prosecutor’s office said that all of the continuances in the case have been at the defendant, Mayes', request. The spokesperson said the judge decides whether the continuances should be granted, and the most recent continuance was to get a report from a forensic pathologist. They also said that they understand it is frustrating for the family, but in some serious cases, judges may allow leeway as they do not want any possible grounds for error on appeal.

There is a Justice 4 Avery website that was created in Averylee’s honor.

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