(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.)– The woman accused of kidnapping a baby just hours after birth appeared in a sentencing hearing Thursday morning.
Gloria Williams kidnapped Kamiyah Mobley in July 1998, hours after her mother, Shanara Mobley, gave birth in Jacksonville, Florida. Williams then took the child to South Carolina where she would raise her under the name Alexis Manigo for the next 18 years.
A DNA test Kamiyah took for investigators in January 2017 confirmed what she had already known for more than a year — she was the same girl who had been taken from that Florida hospital.
Williams pled guilty to first-degree kidnapping and third-degree interference of child custody in February. She faces up to 22 years in prison.
During sentencing, the state called multiple witnesses to the stand, including Kamiyah’s biological parents, Shanara Mobley and Craig Aiken.
Mobley testified she was 16 years old when she gave birth to Kamiyah. While in the hospital room, Mobley said a woman came into the room “dressed like a nurse” and sat with her for “hours.” Later, the woman told Mobley her baby needed to get her temperature taken, picked up the child and left the room.
Mobley would discover 18 years later that woman was Williams.
Mobley said Williams “preyed” on her because she was a minor at the time.
During her testimony, Mobley yelled out, “That is my child. I am your mother, Kamiyah. I am your mother.”
Aiken, Kamiyah’s biological father, also testified during sentencing. He was incarcerated at the time of his daughter’s birth.
“The day that [Williams] took Kamiyah she destroyed me and Shanara’s lives,” Aiken said.
“What [Williams] has been pumping through Kamiyah is lies, what I have pumping through Kamiyah is blood,” Aiken said.
The defense called members of Williams’ family to the stand, including her parents and biological children. Many of them asked for the judge to be lenient when sentencing Williams.
Williams’ father, Wilbert Brown, said his daughter was a “lovely child” and “respectful.”
He also had thoughts on his daughter’s possible sentence.
“If you do the crime, then you have to do the time,” he said, “but I hope it isn’t as bad as it might be.”
“She’s a good woman, she made a mistake and I think she deserves a second chance,” Williams’ husband, Wernoskie Conevy Williams, said.
Conevy Williams said he found out about Kamiyah’s true identity shortly before Williams was arrested.
“[Williams] said, ‘I made a mistake,’ and Lexi said, ‘Mom, it’s going to be OK,'” Conevy Williams said. “I said, ‘It’s going to be OK.'”
Williams’ biological son, Antoine Bolden, discussed his relationship with Kamiyah, whom he refers to as Alexis.
“Alexis is one of my best friends,” Antoine said.
He called her “a happy child,” adding that “she is a jack of all trades… She’s like a firecracker. You’d instantly get snatched into that smile.”
Andre Bolden, William’s other biological son, said his mother is a “great, wonderful, beautiful person.”
“Whether you are having a good day or a bad day, her smile will light you up,” Andre said.
During testimony, Kamiyah sat in the back of the courtroom with her lawyer, Justin Bamberg. Gloria Williams is expected to testify Friday as the final defense witness, followed by closing arguments. Sources confirm to ABC News that Kamiyah will not be testifying in the sentencing hearing.
Sentencing will continue Friday at 10:30 a.m.
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