Posted: May 04, 2018
By Stephanie Brown
Jacksonville, FL —
Twenty years after she took a newborn from a Jacksonville hospital and brought the baby to South Carolina to raise as her own daughter, Gloria Williams is telling the court why.
Williams says she was in an abusive relationship with a man, Charles Manigo.
“He took me to a place that was dark. My soul, my spirit was broke, my heart was broke,” she says.
She says Manigo wanted her to have a baby, and she thought that would help bring peace to their home, so she ultimately got pregnant. Williams says she miscarried as a result of the stress of the abuse, but she didn’t initially know it, because her body continued to change. She prepared her home for a baby and even had a baby shower, before realizing what happened- but even after she got it medically confirmed, she didn’t tell anyone.
In July 1998, Williams says she was leaving work, when she essentially went in to autopilot, and instead of stopping at her home, she kept driving. She says she doesn’t know why she drove down I-95 from her home in South Carolina, or what she was thinking when she ultimately got off the highway in Jacksonville.
“It was definitely not to take a baby, that’s for sure,” she says.
Defense: What was your intent when you got off I-95 in Jacksonville? #GloriaWilliams: "It was definitely not to take a baby, that's for sure". It was a long time ago, "I was broken", "I didn't feel good about anything". #KamiyahMobley pic.twitter.com/bEUmSX5HI0— Stephanie Brown (@SBrownReports) May 4, 2018
That blank slate continued as she walked in to the hospital.
“I really just cannot tell you what was on my mind. My head back then, I was a different person. My head was in a different place, I was just broken. I had a broken heart, I had a broken spirit, I didn’t feel good about myself, I didn’t feel good about anything,” she says.
Williams says she went and looked at the other babies and thought about the one she had lost, and then walked in to Shanara Mobley’s room, again telling the defense she wasn’t sure why.
Williams says she spent a lot of time talking with Mobley and helping her out. She was still wearing scrubs from her job, and while she told the prosecutor that she didn’t claim to be a nurse at the hospital, she admitted that she knew that’s what Mobley thought. Then the newborn, Kamiyah Mobley, was brought in to the room.
“I was thinking about, you know, maybe this baby could help Charles, that’s what I was thinking. It was like, she [Shanara] was so young, and she just wasn’t real sure about what she was gunna do, and just my mindset at that time wasn’t logical, it definitely wasn’t logical. But for what I was thinking at that time, it seemed right, it seemed right,” Williams says.
Williams would ultimately take the baby back to her home in South Carolina, renaming her Alexis Manigo, and telling Charles Manigo it was his baby. She says the baby did not bring peace to their home after all, though, and when she ultimately had a custody agreement with her two sons from a prior marriage changed because of the abuse, she decided to leave with Kamiyah as well.
“I just thought to myself, I can’t have him around her. I can’t do it, and she deserves better,” Williams says.
The defense walked Williams through a series of photos showing awards, celebrations and gatherings featuring Kamiyah while she was growing up. Williams further said Kamiyah was always cared for and provided for.
Things changed, when Kamiyah decided she wanted to start working. Williams says Kamiyah asked for her birth certificate and social security card, so she could finish all the paperwork on a job she had already lined up.
“I said, ‘you’re not my daughter’. I said, ‘I took you a long time ago’,” Williams says she told Kamiyah at that time.
Williams says she offered to turn herself in at that time, but Kamiyah told her not to. They went on another year and a half or so before the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office ultimately learned about Kamiyah and reached out.
“She wanted me to run. I told her I couldn’t do that, I couldn’t leave her, I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t have a life like that. I was already in this for too long, and the truth was going to come out,” Williams says.
Williams says she had thought often about bringing Kamiyah back, but couldn’t do it.
“I think fear, I think just crippling fear. And then I fell in love with her,” Williams says.
The prosecutor questioned Williams to show she made choices and decisions along the way, to lead to where we are now. Williams agreed that how this went is the “worst” possible outcome for Kamiyah, and that she could have even left her anonymously at a hospital at any point when the child was young. Upon questioning from the prosecution, Williams said her motivation for taking the baby was not out of concern for how Mobley would raise her, but for selfish reasons.
Despite that, she is asking for forgiveness from all parties involved, including from Kamiyah.
"I never meant to hurt you, I never meant to hurt you. I just love that child so and I never meant to hurt you, I never meant to cause you any harm, any pain, any of that. And I’m sorry, and I hope that you can find it in your heart to forgive me. I tried to love you the best way I could, the only way I could. I tried to nurture you, but nothing can take away what I took from you. Nothing can replace that. I will always love you, always. And the joy that you brought me, I thank God the world can’t take it away from me. But you're not mine. Your mother and father are sitting right here,” Williams says.
And to Kamiyah’s biological parents- Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken- she apologized as well.
“I pray every day, every day for the good Lord to renew your hearts, renew your minds, and to heal your hearts, and to give you the peace and joy that comes from knowing His word. I can’t explain where I was back then 20 years ago, I know I wronged you, and I’m so sorry and so many days, so many days, so many days, so many days I just wanted to pick that child up and say, ‘C’mon, let’s get in this car and go’, I just couldn't. I couldn’t. When I left Jacksonville, I didn't look back, I didn't know what you went through,” she says.
Williams is facing up to 22 years in prison, after pleading guilty earlier this year to kidnapping and custody interference of the child. She says, if she’s allowed to return to society, she wants to help young girls who are in abusive relationships. She intends to return to South Carolina to live with her husband, who supports her.
The prosecutor asked Williams what penalty she thinks she deserves for what she did. She said she knows she needs to be punished for her crimes, but isn’t able to say what that should look like. Instead, she says she will abide by whatever the judge decides.
The judge is taking everything under consideration, and will impose a sentence for Williams on June 8th.
Gloria Williams delivers emotional apologies, while telling the court she wasn’t thinking logically when she abducted...Posted by Stephanie Brown, News 104.5 WOKV on Friday, May 4, 2018
Loving, caring, and God-fearing.
It’s how the friends and family of Gloria Williams described her in court today, while asking a judge to be lenient in sentencing her for the 1998 kidnapping of newborn Kamiyah Mobley from a Jacksonville hospital. She could face up to 22 years in prison, after pleading guilty earlier this year.
“She is a wonderful person who made a mistake. It caught up with her,” says Andre Bolden, who is one of Williams’ sons.
Williams was arrested in early 2017 in South Carolina, where she had been raising Mobley as her own daughter, under the name Alexis Manigo. The arrest came as a shock to those who know her.
“I don’t want to lose my mom off one mistake. It was a heavy mistake,” says her other son, Antoine Bolden.
Both Andre and Antoine told the judge they had good childhoods, splitting their time between Williams and their father, William Bolden. Antoine described Williams as his role model.
“She’s everything I want me wife to be when I get married. She’s genuine, she’s loving, she’s caring,” he says.
Williams’ husband, Wernoskie Conevy Williams, says he had learned about a year before the arrest that Williams had kidnapped Mobley, but he chose not to come forward, in order to support his wife. He joined in her sons in saying Williams made a mistake.
“She deserves a second chance,” Mr. Williams says.
Williams’ pastor and friend, Sheri Yvette-Base White, says everyone who seeks forgiveness from God can get it, and she believes Williams has been using her time in jail to get closer to God.
“We will sin and fall short daily, everyone is going to make a mistake every day. Sin is sin. The deal is, that you repent for your sins and ask for forgiveness,” White says.
She says Williams served several years as a Youth Coordinator for the church, while also playing a prominent role in fundraisers and other church operations. She says Williams had an impact on her life personally- while she was trying to get help from the VA- and she’s seen her have a direct impact on others in the community as well.
“I have not lost a friend, because I know where she is. But I don’t have that ray of sunshine,” White says.
Williams’ parents also pleaded for leniency.
“If you do the crime, you’ve got to do the time. I just hope it’s not as bad as it might be,” says her father, Wilbert Brown.
Both Brown and his wife Gloria are elderly and sick. Gloria says, before Williams was incarcerated, she would help her with doctors, visit her when she was in the hospital, and more.
“I’m not mad at my daughter. I love her so much, and I miss her,” she says.
Gloria says, if she had known, she would have told Williams to give the child back to her family. They both say the kidnapping is out of character for Williams.
The defense also questioned several witnesses about what they describe as an abusive relationship that Williams was in at the time. Williams’ parents and sons believe that Charles Manigo- the man she led to believe was Kamiyah’s father- was physically, verbally, and mentally abusive, to the point where Williams’ sons had their custody arrangement changed so that they would live away from that home more.
“We understand, yes, something wrong happened. We understand. We don’t know why, but we understand,” White says.
They all offered to support Williams whenever she’s allowed to go back to South Carolina. Her sons said their children miss seeing their grandmother.
“I think she deserves a second chance, I think she shouldn’t get the max. I think she’s at peace with the situation, she made a mistake, she understands that, and putting somebody behind bars for 22 years, that’s a lot when they did so much before they went in,” Antoine Bolden says.
Williams took Mobley from a Jacksonville hospital just a few hours after she was born. She told Mobley’s mother that she was a nurse and was taking the newborn to get her temperature checked, when she instead left the hospital with her and never returned. Mobley’s biological parents testified earlier in the day, asking the judge to impose the maximum sentence.
Mobley herself will not testify during the sentencing hearing. Instead, prior interviews she has done have been submitted for the judge’s consideration. Mobley has previously called for leniency for Williams.
The sentencing hearing resumes Friday morning. Stay with WOKV for full coverage.
The woman who admitted to kidnapping a newborn from a Jacksonville hospital twenty years ago will soon learn her sentence, and the parents of the baby she took want that to be as severe as possible.
“She’s making all this about her. It is not about her. She’s not sorry, never apologized. Writing my baby, ‘I’m still your mother’. She’s not sorry, so why should we have mercy on her soul,” says Shanara Mobley, the biological mother of Kamiyah Mobley.
Kamiyah was taken only hours after her birth in 1998 by Gloria Williams, who then raised her in South Carolina as her own daughter. Williams was arrested in early 2017, and pleaded guilty this past February to kidnapping and custody interference. Under her plea, she could face up to 22 years in prison.
Mobley says she wants Williams to face death for what she did, but since that’s not going to happen, she’s asking for her to be barred from contacting Kamiyah- who was raised as Alexis Manigo- in the future. Mobley says it’s hurt her to see Williams still claiming affection toward Kamiyah, and vice versa.
“That is my child. I am your mother, Kamiyah. I am your mother,” Mobley says.
Mobley was a young teen when she got pregnant, and says that made her dedicated to turn her life around.
“I was happy, like everything was right,” she says.
She got emotional thinking about the first time she could remember holding Kamiyah, after giving birth.
“When they brought her to the room and I held my baby, she was so beautiful. She was so beautiful, she was so beautiful. I just kept waiting to take her home and dress her up and show her off,” Mobley says.
Williams posed as a nurse and spent hours in the hospital room with her and the newborn. Mobley told the court that Williams said she was going to take Kamiyah to get her temperature checked- but she never returned. She trusted her, and feels like she was taken advantage of, because she was young, weak, and scared.
“She preyed on a child and a baby. Would we be here right now if it was a grown woman? She preyed on a child, and we would not be here if it was a grown woman. She wouldn’t have went in to a grown woman’s room and got her baby,” Mobley says.
Kamiyah’s biological father, Craig Aiken, was in jail at the time of her birth. He told the court that he was in his cell, when several officers came up and took him aside.
“They said, ‘Mr. Aiken, we’ve got good news and we’ve got bad news’,” Aiken says.
He told the court he was so happy when they told him his daughter had been born, but couldn’t understand when they said she had been kidnapped. He didn’t get any answers, and when he was allowed to talk to Mobley, she laid blame on him for not being there.
The moment Kamiyah was taken is something both Aiken and Mobley say they think about daily.
“I missed the first walk, first word, graduating, prom- I missed all of that,” Mobley says.
They came together every year with other family to mark their daughter’s birthday, saying they always believed she was still alive. Others in the family feared the worst, but kept hoping.
“I prayed to God that I would be able to see what happened to my grandbaby, and God answered my prayers,” says Velma Aiken, Kamiya’s biological grandmother.
The family endured a lot over the years, though, including intensive questioning by police and scrutiny by the community. A JSO detective who worked the case for more than a decade confirmed for the court that the family was investigated for the kidnapping, because the stranger kidnapping of a baby is such an unusual crime.
“Do you know what it feels like to have the whole world turn their back on you, for a crime that someone else committed,” Aiken asked.
Another person tied up in this is Charles Mobley, who was in a relationship with Williams at the time of Kamiyah’s abduction, and was led to believe by Williams that he was the baby’s father.
“I lost a child, it’s something I can’t get back,” he says.
Aiken wants Williams to face the maximum sentence, but not because of his own personal feelings. He says he knows his daughter doesn’t want Williams to serve time, but he wants to make sure there is a clear message sent to anyone who kidnaps a child.
“You’ve got to pay for what you did,” he says.
Like Mobley, he wants no further contact between Kamiyah and Williams as well, saying Williams doesn’t understand she’s not Kamiyah’s mother, and that she’s only hurting the teen more by trying to stay in her life.
“What she has pumping through Kamiyah is lies, what I have pumping through Kamiyah is blood,” Aiken says.
And for Mobley, it’s about looking forward.
“The future has so much to offer us right now,” she says.
She is looking forward to the milestones still to come, like seeing Kamiyah go to college.
The defense called several witnesses late Thursday, painting Williams as a loving and caring mother. The sentencing hearing continues Friday.
The woman arrested for the 1998 abduction of baby Kamiyah Mobley from a Jacksonville hospital has pleaded guilty.
Gloria Williams was scheduled to begin trial this week, but during a disposition hearing she withdrew her original not guilty plea and changed it to guilty.
Prosecutors say Williams pretended to be a hospital worker and took Kamiyah Mobley from University Hospital, raising her in South Carolina.
A judge will sentence Williams in early May. She faces 0-22 years in prison.
Kamiyah Mobley, now known as Alexis Manigo, is back in Jacksonville for a homecoming celebration.
Family and friends say hundreds are celebrating Mobley's return to Jacksonville after 18 years.
Mobley was raised in South Carolina and has been going by the name Alexis Manigo. She was abducted from a Jacksonville hospital in 1998.
Investigators said Gloria Williams, 51, posed as a nurse and abducted Mobley from what is now UF Health Jacksonville. Mobley was just hours old.
Investigators tracked Mobley and Williams to Walterboro, South Carolina, after several tips came in to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Williams was arrested and extradited to Jacksonville.New mugshot of Gloria Williams, suspect in Kamiyah Mobley abduction case. She's now in jail in Duval County https://t.co/CTbMc3ZmxJ pic.twitter.com/ofByAInj3F— Brittney Donovan (@brittneydonovan) January 17, 2017
She faces kidnapping and interference with custody charges.
Mobley's birth parents, who still live in Jacksonville, drove to South Carolina to see her Jan. 14, days after she was found living in South Carolina.Kamiyah Mobley has been reunited with her birth parents 18 years after she was abducted at a #Jacksonville hospital https://t.co/J2sNxEq745 pic.twitter.com/GZ00Y0bA21— Brittney Donovan (@brittneydonovan) January 14, 2017
Mobley's family said Saturday night is all about celebrating her.
Meanwhile, Williams remains in the Duval County jail without bond.We were told by people close to family Kamiyah had arrived in Jacksonville at her hotel late this afternoon. @ActionNewsJax— Kevin Clark (@KevinANjax) January 22, 2017 Questions about Kamiyah Mobley's identity arose when she turned 18, applied for jobs with fake social security card https://t.co/8mqrmj9fRY pic.twitter.com/IDC8cQOGkW— Brittney Donovan (@brittneydonovan) January 16, 2017 Questions about Kamiyah Mobley's identity arose when she turned 18, applied for jobs with fake social security card https://t.co/8mqrmj9fRY pic.twitter.com/IDC8cQOGkW— Brittney Donovan (@brittneydonovan) January 16, 2017
The biological mother of the teen kidnapped from her hospital room in Jacksonville 18 years ago is sharing her heart with friends and the daughter she’d like to get to know.
Shanara Mobley posted a message in a Facebook group, thanking everyone who has been supporting her through this journey. In the post, she said she had been confused and depressed since investigatorsannounced finding Kamiyah Mobley, who has been going by Alexis Manigo, on Friday in Walterboro, South Carolina.
"The tears won't stop," Shanara Mobley said in the post. "I see my baby girl wanting this lady in her life and not me."
Many people overwhelmingly responded to the post giving their support to Shanara Mobley.
Shanara Mobley said she "stopped everything" after finding out that Kamiyah Mobley had been found.
"Kamiyah, if you see this, know you are your mother's child. Your whole character is me, and you can never get rid of that. Love you, baby girl," Shanata Mobley said.
Since the announcement of the Kamiyah Mobley's location, Action News Jax acquired an arrest report for a suspect Gloria Williams, 51, that said Kamiyah knew that she had been abducted more than a year ago.
The document also reported that Kamiyah told a friend that she had been abducted.
The warrant, which was released after Williams was extradited to Jacksonville on Tuesday, detailed tips that led to the discovery of Kamiyah.
Williams was taken to Jacksonville Tuesday and appeared in court. On Monday, she invoked her right to remain silent and her right to counsel. Her next court appearance Feb. 8.
The now 18-year-old who was kidnapped as a newborn from a Jacksonville hospital has known she was kidnapped for the past year and a half, according to new court records.
Alexis Manigo- who was named Kamiyah Mobley at birth- was raised as her kidnapper’s own daughter in South Carolina.
We’ve obtained the affidavit for the arrest warrant of 51-year-old Gloria Williams, who’s been arrested for kidnapping and custodial interference. The affidavit says two witnesses spoke with police- one saying Williams confessed to him that she stole the baby, and the other saying Manigo told her Williams admitted Manigo was kidnapped. Both conversations allegedly happened a year and a half ago.
Manigo was taken from a Jacksonville hospital shortly after birth in 1998. The suspect, now identified as Williams, was dressed as a nurse and spent time with the 16-year-old mother before leaving with the baby. Police weren’t able to track them down until tips started leading them to South Carolina last year.
The new affidavit says the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children got an anonymous tip in August 2016 saying Manigo had told a friend she was kidnapped as a baby. The tipster told police the victim was currently living under the name Alexis Manigo. The second tip, also to NCMEC, came in November 8th. That tipster said Williams had admitted to taking the baby from the hospital, renaming her Alexis Manigo, and raising her as her own in South Carolina.
Detectives with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office were able to travel to Walterboro, South Carolina on January 10th, and court records show they confirmed at that time that Manigo’s birth certificate and social security card were fraudulent. The social security number belonged to a man in Virginia who died in 1983.
Williams had her first appearance in front of a judge in Jacksonville Wednesday. She was denied bond on the kidnapping charge.
The woman who was abducted as a newborn from a Jacksonville hospital 18 years ago is speaking out for the first time.In an interview this morning with ABC's "Good Morning America", Alexis Manigo talks about what it was like for her to find out she was really born Kamiyah Mobley."Your whole life, you've been known as Alexis, Lexi," Manigo added. "Now it's like people are referring to you as someone else nationally."Her story exploded publicly last Friday when the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office announced that Mobley had been found living in South Carolina and that the woman she thought was her mother was under arrest on charges of kidnapping and custodial interference.That woman - 51-year-old Gloria B. Williams - has since been extradited to Duval County and is held without bond following her first appearance in front of the judge this morning. She's due in court again February 8th.Manigo wouldn't say how she found out about her past because of concerns it might hurt Gloria legally and also admitted that it was painful to see Williams arrested."She's a gentle woman," Manigo noted. "From that one mistake, I was given the best life. I had everything I ever needed [and] wanted. I had love, especially."Manigo said she hopes the justice system won't punish Williams too hard and that she will always love her no matter what."I understand what she did was wrong, but just don't lock her up and throw away the key, like everything she did was just awful," Manigo stated. "She loved me for 18 years. She cared for me for 18 years."Also speaking to ABC's GMA, Manigo's lawyer says they're reviewing her legal options moving forward, which includes getting her real identity sorted out.
Manigo has since been reunited with her biological parents and says she's going to give them a chance to be in her life moving forward.Gloria Williams held without bond. Suspect in #kamiyahmobley case. Next court date February 8th. @WOKVNews pic.twitter.com/WdXUJ9wFok — Robert Alonso (@RAlonsoWOKV) January 18, 2017
A Facebook live video shows the young woman who was snatched from a Jacksonville hospital as an infant joking about getting kidnapped.
In the July 2016 video, she does not hint that she knew she really was a kidnapping victim.
Gloria Williams is still in a South Carolina jail cell, accused of kidnapping Kamiyah Mobley as a baby in 1998 and raising her as her own under the name Alexis Manigo.
“I will not be kidnapped. I refuse,” said Manigo in the video.
Manigo was joking with her friends about strangers on social media asking where she lives.
July Facebook live video shows woman kidnapped from #Jax as infant joking about getting kidnapped https://t.co/ZALts6Vjze @ActionNewsJax pic.twitter.com/Qp1KSM6K6h— Jenna Bourne (@jennaANjax) January 16, 2017
“And they’re going, ‘No, I’m not a serial killer.’ Oh yeah? What if you’re a kidnapper?” said Manigo in the video. “’Nobody trying to kidnap you?’ You’d be surprised. You’d be surprised. They’d probably bring me back in the next two hours because I’d probably talk their head off or something.”
Manigo’s Facebook posts since Williams' arrest on Friday have consistently shown support for the woman who raised her, who Manigo said “was a great mom.”
Manigo was reunited with her birth parents on Saturday.
Kamiyah Mobley was reunited with her birth parents 18 years after she was abducted from a #Jacksonville hospital https://t.co/RlspkgILvn pic.twitter.com/yx7MmI7WjD— ActionNewsJax (@ActionNewsJax) January 14, 2017
In the meantime, she’s lashed out at people who are sharing their opinions on Facebook, saying things such as, “Maybe you should right [sic] my story cause you know everything and have the time.”
Manigo also posted a status on Facebook on Monday, calling out the man who she grew up believing was her father, Charles Manigo.
“You were nothing to me my whole life,” she wrote, after he went on ABC News on Sunday, complaining that he had paid child support for a child who was not his.
Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams revealed on Monday that Alexis Manigo had a fraudulent Social Security card and birth certificate.
#JSO sheriff on Kamiyah Mobley, found 18 yrs later: "Her social security card and her birth certificate were both fraudulent" @ActionNewsJax pic.twitter.com/ZFkJ5MGQoq— Jenna Bourne (@jennaANjax) January 16, 2017
Sheriff Williams said the fake documents began to raise questions as the 18-year-old began to look for work.
“We’re not sure how much she knew or what she knew, or how much she was told. But we believe that there was a conversation at some point with some explanation about why all her birth documents were fraudulent,” said Sheriff Williams.
The forms needed to enroll in the Colleton County School District, where Manigo attended school, show that a birth certificate and a Social Security card are optional.
Sheriff: "We believe that there was a conversation at some point with some explanation about why her birth documents were fraudulent" pic.twitter.com/EqAJbHG3el— ActionNewsJax (@ActionNewsJax) January 16, 2017
Manigo was joking with her friends about strangers on social media asking where she lives. She did not hint that realized she was actually a kidnapping victim.Posted by Jenna Bourne Action News Jax on Monday, January 16, 2017
She’s back in Jacksonville.
A 51-year-old South Carolina woman is facing kidnapping and custodial interference charges in connection to the snatching of a newborn girl from a Jacksonville hospital 18 years ago.
Shortly after 1 PM Tuesday, JSO took Williams out of the Colleton County Jail and departed for Jacksonville. They arrived around 4 PM.
Mobley – who authorities say was raised by Williams as her daughter in the town of Walterboro under a different name – met her biological parents for the first time on Saturday. Mobley also reportedly visited Williams briefly while she was in jail.
DNA testing confirmed that Williams’ daughter was the same baby taken from University Medical Center (now UF Health Jacksonville) in 1998.
Officials believe Williams walked into the hospital dressed as a nurse and took Kamiyah after earning her mother’s trust.
Investigators haven’t said at this point why they think Williams targeted that particular baby.
Williams is facing life in prison if convicted.
An 18-year-old was reunited with her birth parents on Saturday, 18 years after she was abducted from a Jacksonville hospital.
Kamiyah Mobley was finally reunited with her biological mother and father on Saturday afternoon.
Craig Aiken and Shanara Mobley drove to South Carolina from Jacksonville after hearing their daughter was found living in Walterboro.
A friend of Shanara Mobley posted photos of the reunion on Facebook.
Aiken said his daughter told him she was glad to meet him.
"I never gave up hope, I always thought I’d find her,” Aiken said. "It’s been 18 years, it’s going to be hard to make that up."
Mobley also met her biological mother for the first time since she was taken just hours after her birth.
The two were guarded by police as they drove away.
The reunion happened at a police department in Walterboro, a community where Kamiyah Mobley has been living as Alexis Manigo.
Police say she was raised by Gloria Williams, who is accused of posing as a Jacksonville hospital employee and abducting Kamiyah on July 10, 1998, hours after she was born.
Williams was arrested at her home in Walterboro Friday morning and is now in custody.
She is facing kidnapping and interference with custody charges. Officials said there is no statute of limitations in the case and she could face life in prison.
She is from a town called Ruffin, which is about 20 minutes from Walterboro.
A lot of her family still lives there and a cousin told Action News Jax that the family had no idea of what police are accusing Williams of having done.
She is coming back to Jacksonville
51-year-old Gloria Williams has been named by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office as the woman who abducted Kamiyah Mobley as an infant 18 years ago. She has been arrested in Walterboro, South Carolina, where she is being held on the Jacksonville warrant for kidnapping and custodial interference.
In court Friday, Williams waived extradition, meaning she will be brought back to Florida to face the local charges. The judge there denied bond to allow extradition, but says Williams will have a bond hearing once she’s in Jacksonville.
Mobley was there for the bond hearing, sobbing and surrounded by loved ones.
JSO says Williams went to then-University Medical Center dressed like a nurse in 1998. She allegedly talked with and helped Mobley’s 16-year-old mother, before walking off with the baby.
It’s unclear why Williams was in Jacksonville, any ties she has to the area, and why she targeted Mobley. Police also aren’t yet sure whether Williams went directly back to South Carolina after taking the newborn.
More than 2,500 tips and leads were received through the course of the investigation, and JSO says they finally got a break late last year, when information submitted through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children led them to Walterboro. Police found an 18-year-old with Mobley’s birthday, and soon confirmed the identity she was living under was fake. DNA testing which returned Thursday night confirmed the teen is Mobley.
We’re told Williams was raising Mobley as her own daughter.
Williams could face life in prison if convicted on the kidnapping charge. It’s not yet clear how quickly she will return to Jacksonville, but the State Attorney’s Office has promised a full pursuit of justice.
Eighteen years after she was abducted from the hospital, Kamiyah Mobley has been found.
Mobley was taken just hours after birth July 10, 1998, from UF Health Jacksonville- which at the time was University Medical Center. The suspect in the abduction was dressed like a nurse, and according to the original incident report, she spent time with Mobley’s 16-year-old mother helping her and talking with her, before instructing her to put the baby down and then leaving with the newborn.
When the suspect didn’t return with the baby, Mobley’s mother called for security, who then brought in JSO. A massive, multi-agency law enforcement effort was launched to track down the baby, but it was not successful.
“Even when a case is deemed cold, we’re always looking for new information. A tip or an advancement in technology that furthers that investigation,” says Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.
Williams says police received more than 2,500 tips and leads in this case over the years, but two new informational leads late last year from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children are what led them to Walterboro, South Carolina. JSO, working in cooperation with police in that area, found an 18-year-old who shared Mobley’s birthday. Investigators determined the identity that teen was living under was based on fraudulent documents, and DNA testing has now confirmed the teen is Mobley.
“A case like we have not seen obviously in this country, for a long time,” Williams says.
Mobley was being raised by her abductor, 51-year-old Gloria Williams, according to police. Mobley appeared to be in good health and had the life of a normal teen, but Sheriff Williams says she did suspect that something was wrong.
“She had an inclination beginning probably a couple of months ago, that she may have been involved in this in some way,” he says.
JSO won’t be releasing the identity that Mobley has been living under, asking for space and privacy for this victim. She has been given a victim’s advocate to help her work through all of this new information and get whatever support she needs.
Mobley’s biological family has been informed that she was found, but Sheriff Williams says it will be up to Mobley, who is now 18 years old, if she will be reunited. Williams says the family was “elated” to learn she was alive and well.
It’s still unclear why the suspect Williams targeted Mobley and what brought her to Jacksonville and to that hospital. JSO says we’re very early in the investigation at this time.
“Try to paint a picture of what may have happened 18 years ago, how that impacted the decision she made to commit the kidnapping,” he says.
State Attorney Melissa Nelson says suspect Williams could get up to life in prison on the kidnapping charge and five years on the interference with custody charge, if convicted. Williams will be brought back to Jacksonville to face the charges. Williams is believed to be the only suspect in this case.
In addition to thanking the Cold Case investigators who continued to pursue leads, Sheriff Williams also praised the FBI in Jacksonville as a key partner, and thanked the FDLE for their quick work at the lab to process the DNA.
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