Middletown mom, boyfriend accused of killing her 6-year-old son return to court Monday

Published: Aug. 15, 2021 at 1:01 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 15, 2021 at 1:12 PM EDT
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MIDDLETOWN, Ohio (FOX19) - A Middletown mother and her boyfriend accused in the death of her 6-year-old son and the disposal of the boy’s body in the Ohio River are set to return to court Monday.

Brittany Gosney, 29, and James Hamilton, 43, were both indicted on a combined 31-count indictment for the slaying of 6-year-old James Hutchinson on Feb. 26 in rural Preble County and the disposal of his body days later in the Ohio River near Lawrenceburg, Ind.

Both are scheduled to return to Butler County Common Pleas Court starting at 8:30 a.m. Monday for separate reasons.

Gosney will appear for a motion hearing before Judge Noah Powers.

Gosney was ruled competent to stand trial in April following a court-ordered mental evaluation. The evaluation was ordered after she initially pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

Now, her attorney says statements she made to detectives should be thrown out at trial because her rights were violated.

“During these interviews or questions the defendant was not made fully aware of her constitutional rights. She was interrogated extensively and now believes that counsel’s presence would have been appropriate,” the latest court filings state.

Hamilton, who has pleaded not guilty, will appear before a judge for a preliminary hearing.

The last time Gosney and Hamilton appeared before a judge was May 24.

Gosney’s trial is set for Sept. 20. Hamilton’s will be Oct. 4.

Gosney is held in lieu of a $2 million bond at the Butler County Jail.

Hamilton’s bond is $750,000.

Searchers, meanwhile, have been unable locate James’ body in the Ohio River despite multiple tries.

According to Middletown police, Gosney confessed to killing her youngest child on Feb. 26 as he tried to get back into her minivan when she abandoned him and his two siblings, 9 and 7, at Rush Run Wild Life Area in Preble County.

James Hutchinson
James Hutchinson(Middletown Police)

Gosney left the park but went back for the children about 30 or 40 minutes later, police have said. She put them in the van and returned to their Middletown home.

That’s where prosecutors say Gosney and her boyfriend, James Hamilton, put her son’s body in a spare room and left it there 48 hours before driving to the Ohio River in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, court records show.

At some point, a concrete block was tied to the first grader’s body before they threw it into the water, prosecutors wrote.

Gosney and Hamilton removed the hard drive from video cameras at their residence along with tape and rope and hid them at another location, court records show.

Gosney faces 16 charges including murder, involuntary manslaughter, tampering with evidence, child endangering, kidnapping, and gross abuse of a corpse. Hamilton faces 15 charges including, kidnapping, gross abuse of a corpse, child endangering, tampering with evidence, and abduction.

Eighteen charges are related to allegations the children were hog-tied the day before or the day of James’ murder. James and at least one of his sisters were tied up, according to court records.

Gosney and Hamilton reported James missing the morning of Feb. 28, but Middletown police say discrepancies in their stories followed by Gosney’s statements led to the couple’s arrest.

According to the Preble County Sheriff’s Office report, Gosney told investigators she was under pressure from her boyfriend to get rid of Hutchinson and his siblings.

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