• Kamiyah Mobley kidnapping case: Gloria Williams said she 'wasn't logical' the day she took Kamiyah

    By: Action News Jax

    Updated:

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - 10 THINGS WE LEARNED: Kidnapper Gloria Williams' testimony from Day 2

    The day Kamiyah Mobley was born and kidnapped hours later -- July 10, 1998 -- Gloria Williams said she got out of work in Charleston, South Carolina, got on Interstate 95 south and kept driving.

    She felt like her life was out of control -- she didn't have custody of her sons at the time, was in a rocky relationship with Charles Manigo and had just had a miscarriage.

    "I was just depressed. I was like, 'why is my life like this?'" she said.

    Eventually, she got off an exit in Jacksonville and went to University Medical Center -- now UF Health Jacksonville -- and went to the maternity ward to look at the babies. 

    When asked what her intent was, Williams said, "it was definitely not to take a baby, that's for sure."

    She said she did not know Shanara Mobley, Kamiyah's mother, before that day.

    "She was so young and wasn't real sure about what she was going to do. My mindset at that time definitely wasn't logical," Williams said, speaking of her conversation with Shanara Mobley on July 10, 1998.

    Williams recounted for the court the day she revealed to Kamiyah that she had taken her at birth. Kamiyah wanted to get a job at Shoney's in Walterboro, South Carolina, and needed her birth certificate and Social Security card.

    Kamiyah didn't believe Williams at first, and didn't want Williams to turn herself in.

    "She wanted me to run," Williams said.

    While on the stand, Williams apologized to Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken, Kamiyah's biological father.

    "I hope one day that you could ever find it in your heart to forgive me for what I’ve done to y’all," Williams said as she addressed Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken.

    Williams also apologized to her own family for deceiving them, and to Kamiyah.

    "I never meant to cause you any harm, any pain, any of that. I’m sorry. I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me. I tried to love you the best way I could," Williams said to Kamiyah.

    Williams said when she is released from prison, she would like to finish her master's degree and serve as an advocate for women in abusive relationships.

    "I just want to try to make it right, if it's possible," she said.

    The state took a tough stance during the cross-examination of Williams, stating that for every moment after she took Kamiyah, she knew she was a kidnapper and despite her prayers, she never took Kamiyah Mobley's family out of the pain they were in. 

    Williams acknowledged this and agreed. 

    During cross-examination, Williams once again talked about the day she took Kamiyah and admitted she put the child in a bag.

    "From what I remember, I wasn't running. I was walking and I believed at any given time, somebody could grab my arm and say 'Hey, what do you have in the bag?'" Williams said.

    The prosecution pointed out that after returning to South Carolina from Jacksonville, Williams could have turned the baby in anonymously without getting in trouble.

    Williams said she did not return Kamiyah out of fear; the prosecution said it was out of selfishness.

    Even though the prosecution contended that her life with Kamiyah was based on a lie, Williams said, "The love wasn't a lie. True love is not a lie."

    When asked what sentence she should be given by the judge, she said she didn't know. She acknowledged she needs to be punished, but said that the sentence is up to the judge.

    The state laid out its case against Williams in closing arguments, showing forged documents bearing the name "Alexis Manigo," the false name she gave Kamiyah Mobley.

    "You can't be a good person and kidnap a baby," the prosecutor said.

    The prosecutor also showed photos of Shanara Mobley's family, showing a space where Kamiyah should have been in those photos.

    The defense then pointed out in its closing arguments that Williams has no other criminal history and plans to continue her education upon her release.

    Background on Kamiyah Mobley case and what's next

    Kamiyah Mobley was raised by Williams in South Carolina as Alexis Manigo, officials said. Williams was arrested in January 2017.

    Williams pleaded guilty in February in the kidnapping of Kamiyah, who was taken from a Jacksonville hospital just hours after her birth on July 10, 1998.

    The sentencing ranges for Williams are as follows:

    Count 1 - kidnapping charge ranges from the time that Williams has served up to a cap of 22 years.

    Count 2 - interference of child custody has a sentencing rage of zero to five years. The sentences will run concurrently.

    Judge Marianne Aho said this is an unusual case and wants to take her time reviewing the transcripts of testimony, which she said will take 10 business days to prepare. She has scheduled the imposition of sentence for Friday, June 8 at 10:30 p.m.

    ICYMI: FACEBOOK LIVE VIDEO OF GLORIA WILLIAMS' TESTIMONY IN COURT

    ICYMI: FACEBOOK LIVE VIDEO OF CLOSING ARGUMENTS

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