Did she know? Cops says teen suspected she was kidnapped as a baby as she weeps and tells abductor ‘mom’ who raised her that she loves her in court
- Kamiyah Mobley, now 18, was found living in South Carolina as Alexis Manigo
- She was kidnapped as a baby from a Florida hospital by Gloria Williams
- The 18-year-old girl was found living with the women who abducted her
- Kamiyah was allowed to see Williams in jail after arrest and cried out ‘Momma’
- The teenager defended Williams on Facebook saying ‘my mother is no felon’
- Police said Williams will be extradited from South Carolina back to Florida
- Girl’s biological family had spoken to her on video chat from Florida on Friday
Kamiyah burst into tears as she said goodbye to Williams, 51, on Saturday as her abductor waived extradition to Jacksonville, where she will face kidnapping charges.
‘I love you mom,’ she told Williams as the two shared a moment, separated by a mesh screen in the Colleton County Jail in Walterboro, South Carolina.
Williams blew Kamiyah a kiss as the teenager cried out ‘Momma’ and told her abductor she was ‘praying’ for her.
Just hours after police revealed that Kamiyah Mobley had been found, Manigo took to Facebook to defend her abductor.
‘My mother raised me with everything I needed and most of all everything I wanted,’ she wrote. ‘My mother is no felon.’
The mystery of Kamiyah Mobley became a national sensation when she was stolen from her mother Shanara Mobley’s arms at the University Medical Center in Jacksonville in July 1998.
Williams had suffered a miscarriage about a week before she drove the three hours from South Carolina to Florida and abducted baby Kamiyah, Walterboro Live reports.
It is believed she then passed off Kamiyah as her own daughter to family and friends, who said they never suspected a thing.
Jacksonville police said the teenager found out on Friday morning that the woman who raised her in Walterboro her whole life was not her real mother.
Within hours Manigo was able to reconnect over FaceTime with Shanara and her father Craig Aiken, who both cried ‘tears of joy’ after a detective told them their baby had been found.
Her family is planning to drive to South Carolina on Saturday to reunite with the daughter they thought they had lost forever.
Meanwhile Williams, who also has two biological children who grew up with Kamiyah, will be extradited back to Florida as soon as possible and is being held without bond, according to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.
Relatives could be seen comforting a visibly upset Kamiyah as she saw Williams behind bars
She could also be heard crying ‘Momma’ to Williams as she watched the proceedings
It was a highly emotional moment, with many shedding tears in the Colleton County Jail.
She could face up to life in prison if convicted.
The news came as a shock to neighbors who said Williams seemed like any regular member of the community.
Williams was employed as a social worker and attended church every Sunday, where she also led the youth program.
She had worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs’ hospital in Charleston and also volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, according to CBS News.
‘The family is a good family,’ said Ruben Boatright, who has known Williams for 15 years and watched Kamiyah grow up.
‘You don’t want to think bad thoughts of anyone in your family, and that she would do something like that,’ he told WJXT.
‘But then it’s right there staring you in the face. So you don’t know what to say or do.’
Boatright said Kamiyah was a well-mannered teen who was ‘very well read’ and ‘disciplined’.
He said his opinion of Williams hasn’t changed, despite the news.
‘She did that 18 years ago,’ he said. ‘Eighteen years ago she was a young lady and you don’t know what her emotional state was then.’
Boatright said the surprising news has spread like wildfire in the small community.
‘At the fish market, the hair dresser, the gas station, they’re all talking about it,’ he said.
Investigators are currently speaking with Williams’ family to learn more about the abduction. Authorities have not yet determined Williams’ links to Jacksonville.