Details of Disappearance
Kaylah disappeared with her half-brother, Kristian Justice
, and their mother, Alicia Marie Fox, from Detroit, Michigan on May 24, 2014. They had been living with Alicia's husband of four months, Erin Maurice Justice, who is Kristian's father, in the 1800 block of Ardmore Street. Photos of Erin and Alicia are posted with this case summary.
Alicia and the children had moved out shortly before they vanished. Kaylah's father got a text message supposedly from Alicia on June 3, but authorities don't believe she actually sent it. The three of them were reported missing by family members nearly two weeks later, on June 6, after Kaylah missed her kindergarten graduation.
On June 9, Alicia's badly decomposed body was found wrapped in a blanket and dumped in the basement of a vacant house on Penrod Street on the west side of Detroit. She had been shot twice in the head. The house is three doors down from where Erin's cousin lives. There was no sign of either of the children and they have never been seen again.
Erin was arrested in Atlanta, Georgia and charged with first-degree murder in Alicia's case on June 11.
Authorities determined he rented a U-Haul after Alicia's murder and drove it 300 miles between May 27 and May 29, without ever leaving Detroit, before he took a plane flight to Atlanta. He also sold Fox's Chevrolet Impala to a junkyard in Taylor, Michigan; by the time the police tracked it down it had already been stripped.
Erin has a history of violence towards women and a criminal record for drugs and weapons offenses. On June 2, several days after Alicia and the children disappeared, he appeared in court and pleaded guilty to several traffic violations.
Timothy Bernard Jones was also charged with evidence tampering, concealing a death and being an accessory to murder after the fact in Alicia's murder. A photo of Jones is posted with this case summary.
Authorities believe Erin killed Alicia inside their Ardmore Street residence sometime between May 25 and May 27; they found a bullet hole lodged in the wall and blood spattered on the ceiling of the upstairs bedroom. Jones, who was Erin's friend from childhood, allegedly helped him hide the body. He told police that it had originally been stored in a crawl space in the Ardmore Street house and, at the time he helped move it, the children were alive.
The family's white pit bull was found running loose on West End and Vanderbilt in Detroit on June 19. It had strangulation marks around its neck and cigarette burns on its face and chest. It was picked up by the Southwest Animal Group, given veterinary treatment and placed in a foster home, and was eventually identified as Alicia's dog. It was speculated that Erin sold it to be bred and/or used for fighting. The animal had reportedly been very loyal and protective of the children.
Erin reached a plea deal with the prosecution in September 2015, pleading guilty to second-degree murder and a felony weapons charge. He was sentenced to 45 to 80 years in prison.
Due to the circumstances, Kaylah and Kristian are considered to be in grave danger. It's possible they're somewhere in the Atlanta area, where Erin was arrested.