Mom seeks justice against ex-boyfriend accused of killing 2-month-old

Mom seeks justice against ex-boyfriend accused of killing 2-month-old
Published: Dec. 16, 2022 at 3:08 PM EST
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FAIRFIELD, Ohio (WXIX) - The mother of a two-month-old who police think was killed by her father in May, wants her daughter’s story to be told as she begins her fight for justice.

John Powers, 24, is in the process of being extradited to Butler County on murder and endangering children charges after police arrested him in Texas on Wednesday.

The indictment stems from the death of 2-month-old Kiara Powers, according to the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office.

Now, Kiara’s mother, Kylee-Jade Johnson, is grieving her daughter’s death as she looks back on the memories they shared in two short months.

Johnson found out she was pregnant while in boot camp for the military.

She says it came as a surprise, but it was a happy moment for Johnson and her boyfriend at the time, John.

“When I first held her, it was like a light just filled the room, like, all those stresses went away,” remembers Johnson. “[Kiara] was just the light to everybody’s life.”

May 10 is when Johnson got the call that would change her life forever.

Kiara, according to court documents, was in the care of her father when she became unresponsive.

The 2-month-old that was the heart of her mother’s life was rushed to the hospital, where she died, court documents read.

“I’m lucky to be able to, you know, have had her for those two months,” Johnson says.

In the days after losing their daughter, Johnson says John took off for Texas, but he also made a plea for help from the community.

John started a GoFundMe, Johnson thinks, in an effort to help get money run away.

“After, you know, he had disappeared, and he left, he had some type of guilt on him for something that he did because nobody would run after, you know, your daughter passes,” Johnson believes. “Nobody would just skip states.”

Johnson says the day before Kiara died, she got the chance to see her.

She, along with John, took their daughter to the doctor because the 2-month-old was having vomiting and food issues.

At that time, Johnson says she had no idea her daughter was in danger.

“I remember looking at her and telling her that I love her and that she was beautiful, even though she was sleeping,” Johnson recalls of that May 9 doctor visit. “Truly believe her hope, you know, that she heard me and, and that I was there for her.”

Johnson says it was not long after that she would get the news that would shatter her heart.

Two-month-old Kiara died from blunt force trauma to the head, according to the autopsy report from Butler County Coroner Lisa Mannix.

Court records indicate John caused the injury that led to the infant’s death.

On Tuesday, a Butler County grand jury indicted John on charges of murder and endangering children, documents show.

That news brought no relief to the grieving mother.

“I was expecting a huge, you know, weight to be lifted off me and, you know, to feel better,” Johnson describes. “And, and when the time came, it was more like, you know, I, it didn’t bring her back.”

John Powers, 24, was indicted on murder and endangering children charges in Butler County,...
John Powers, 24, was indicted on murder and endangering children charges in Butler County, according to the prosecutor’s office.(Cooke County Texas Jail)

What brings Johnson some comfort is remembering the memories she made with Kiara.

For her, the moment her daughter was born in March was a highlight of her life.

Despite all Johnson has been through, she remains strong, focused now on finding justice for Kiara.

“I just felt so broken,” Johnson says. “And like, I could barely get out of bed. And I think now that things are going in the right direction, and things are getting somewhere like I’m starting to, you know, get that strength back. Now, something is happening. And that’s all I really wanted for her and, and I just want everyone to you know, remember that. Even though she’s gone, she still has that little bit of light everywhere.”

Johnson says she wanted Kiara to have a relationship with her father but had she thought this could happen, she would have fought to prevent John from seeing Kiara.

The prosecutor’s office said they do not think Johnson had anything to do with Kiara’s death.

As for John, once he is back in Ohio, he will have an arraignment.

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