Dominique Mays is behind bars for killing his estranged wife, Amber Owens, whose body was found in a ditch in Montgomery County, Ohio.
In the summer of 2014, Owens moved out of the home she shared with her husband and moved in with her grandparents on Elm Grove Drive in Harrison Township.
She also took her daughter with her, as well as the two boys she had with Mays.
According to the Dayton Daily News, Mays and Owens had a volatile relationship. He was arrested and charged with felony domestic violence in 2013, and Owens had a temporary protection order against him.
Since he was not indicted by a grand jury, the charges were dropped.
On Oct. 21, 2014, Owens went missing. She told a relative she was going to the convenience store to purchase diapers and milk for her children, but she never returned.
She didn’t show up for work at Waffle House either.
Owens’ relatives filed a missing person’s report three days later, which prompted a search by law enforcement and relatives.
“She has a full-time job, she’s a mother of [three], and she’s very family oriented,” said Maj. Daryl Wilson of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. “And this is definitely not in her character.”
On Nov. 4, authorities found Owens’ vehicle abandoned on Arlene Avenue in Dayton.
At around 2 p.m. on Dec. 4, 2014, Owens was found dead. Montgomery County road crews found her decomposed body in a ditch along Post Town Road in Trotwood.
The Montgomery County Coroner’s Office identified Owens through fingerprints.
She was 23 years old at the time of her death, which detectives were investigating as a homicide.
It was reported that Owens’ relatives immediately believed that Mays had something to do with her death because of the type of relationship they had.
They also stated that when they were out looking for Owens, he was not involved in the search.
Mays denied the allegations.
In an interview, he stated that although he and his estranged wife had a volatile relationship, he did not harm her. He also mentioned that he didn’t help search for her because he didn’t get along with Owens’ family.
“I know I love my wife, and I know she loved me. I have no reason to kill her,” Mays said. “Why would I kill her and spend the rest of my life in prison?”
On Dec. 12, Owens was laid to rest. Her funeral service was held at the Ethan Temple Seventh-Day Adventist Church in the 4000 block of Shiloh Springs Road.
Hundreds of people were in attendance, including Mays, who sat in front of the church with his son in his lap.
According to WHIO TV 7, Owens’ family asked him not to attend the funeral, but he showed up anyway, and when he did, they did not ask him to leave.
In April 2015, the Montgomery Prosecutor’s Office announced that Mays had been arrested in connection with Owens’ disappearance and death.
He was charged with murder, involuntary manslaughter, felonious assault, abduction, domestic violence, abuse of a corpse, and tampering with evidence.
Mays was booked into the Montgomery County Jail, where he was held on a $1 million bond.
The details surrounding Owens’ cause of death will not be released to the public following a plea deal Mays made with prosecutors.
He also avoided a trial.
“I personally did not want to go through the trial. It would have been so devastating with all the elements and details,” said the woman who raised Owens.
On June 15, 2016, Mays was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter, felonious assault, abduction, gross abuse of a corpse, and several other charges.
Mays was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Phil Plummer, the Montgomery County Sheriff, released the following statement: “The Sheriff’s Office is pleased with the sentencing of Dominique Mays.”
“This was a cold, calculated murder where he left three young children growing up without their mother. I would like to thank both the Sheriff’s detectives as well as the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office for their hard work on this senseless murder.”Plummer
Mays is serving his sentence at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Scioto County, Ohio.