The search for two missing Tennessee girls grew more urgent Tuesday as authorities confirmed that two bodies found in shallow graves at a Mississippi home are those of the girls’ mother and older sister.
Alexandria Bain, 12, and Kyliyah Bain, 8, of Whiteville, Tennessee, are believed to be with 35-year-old Adam Mayes, a family friend who the FBI described as armed and dangerous. Bodies discovered at a Guntown, Mississippi, home linked to Mayes on Friday have been identified as 31-year-old Jo Ann Bain and 14-year-old Adrienne Bain.
The mother and three girls were reported missing by her husband on April 27. WREG reported that her car was found abandoned about three miles from their home a few days later. Authorities say they contacted Mayes early in the investigation, but he fled and has not been seen since May 1.
Investigators told HLN that Mayes has connections in Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida, and they say he could be headed toward Arizona. According to the FBI, he may be using the alias Christopher Zachery Wylde or Paco Rodrigass. They have also warned that he may have changed his and the girls' appearance.
Mayes has been described as a longtime friend of the Bains and the ex-brother-in-law of Jo Ann’s husband Gary Bain, and he was reportedly staying with the family when Jo Ann and the girls went missing. On HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell Monday, Jo Ann’s aunt, Beverly Goodman, said Mayes claimed to some people that he was the father of the three girls.
“I think, you know, he was just hopefully thinking that one day they would be his family, you know, that Jo Ann would probably go and live with him and bring the girls and they would all be a family together,” Goodman said.
Goodman said she does not believe Jo Ann went with Mayes willingly because she would never have left the house without her daughters’ medication. According to Goodman, Mayes always carried a gun, so she suspects he forced them to go with him at gunpoint.
Friends and neighbors have expressed shock at the allegations against Mayes. According to CNN, Mayes’ landlord said he seemed like a “fun guy,” and Bain family friend Rick Foster called him “a big kid in a grown man’s body.”
“You couldn’t find many people around here that would say anything bad about him,” Goodman said on HLN.
According to WREG, investigators were digging for more evidence Monday at the Guntown property where the bodies were found. Vehicles are being stopped and searched at checkpoints in various locations in Mississippi as the manhunt continues.
HLN's Richard Dool contributed to this report.