Eighteen years after the crime was first committed, Jacksonville police have announced that a newborn stolen from a Florida hospital has been found alive in South Carolina. The authorities also announced that they have arrested and charged the 51-year-old woman responsible for the July 10, 1998 abduction of Kamiyah Mobley.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office say that they had been acting on recently received tips when their cold-case detectives began the journey to Walterboro, South Carolina and managed to find the 18-year-old who had been abducted when she was only five hours old. Given the birth name Kamiyah Mobley, the woman had been living under a different name and had her world turned upside down on Friday when the FBI and Jacksonville detectives informed her that the woman she knew as her mother had been lying to her for her whole life. The police are now working to extradite 51-year-old Gloria Denise Williams from her home in South Carolina to face the kidnapping charges in Jacksonville. She will also be charged with interference with custody.

Reward poster for Kamiyah Mobley created after 1998 abduction. [Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office]

According to Sheriff Mike Williams from Jacksonville the tip the detectives followed led them to an 18-year-old woman who shared the same birth date as the missing Kamiyah Mobley but with a different name. The tips came in last year and further investigations was soon revealed that the identity of the teenager had been established using false documentations. The authorities were able to obtain a DNA sample and test it however and Click 2 Houston reports that it was on Thursday night that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement lab confirmed that the woman was indeed the kidnapped Kamiyah.

The police are not releasing the name the 18-year-old has been living under since her kidnapping in an effort to respect her privacy as she and her biological family in Jacksonville work with victims advocates to connect. News that the baby who had been kidnapped from them in the hospital was alive, safe and well gave the family nothing but joy and her father Craig Aiken spoke to the media of the prayers they had kept in their heart.

“I always hoped and prayed this day would happen. I always felt she was alive. I always felt she would find us. Now we have the rest of our lives together.”

The cold case involving Kamiyah Mobley has seen over 2,500 tips being received by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children coming to dead ends before this break. Sheriff Williams, along with State Attorney Melissa Nelson, FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Charles Spencer and a host of other law enforcement officials have all credited those tips and the quickly-secured DNA match with the successful conclusion to the decades old case of the kidnapped Florida newborn.

“For law enforcement, even when a case is deemed cold, we’re always looking for new information, a tip or an advancement of technology that furthers that investigation. This is what we strive for – justice for our victims no matter how long it takes. So, today I am announcing such a case.”

According to the Florida Times-Union Kamiyah Mobley had been kidnapped at approximately 3 p.m. on July 10, 1998 by a woman posing at the hospital as a nurse, dressed in medical scrubs and a smock. She had apparently been roaming around University Medical Center, now called UF Health Jacksonville, for over 14 years asking about the Mobley’s baby. She even spent five hours with the newborn and her mother Shanara Mobley before claiming that the baby had a fever and needed immediate medical attention and leaving with the 8-pound baby girl in a blanket and a purse over her shoulder. Shanara Mobley had just turned 16 when she was giving birth while Kamiyah’s 19-year-old father had been in jail on charges of lewd assault for having sex with a minor, as Shanara had been 15 when he got her pregnant. While Gloria Williams passed herself off as a nurse to the Mobley family, the nurses thought she was a family member.

MORE: Missing baby Kamiyah Mobley found alive and well in Walterboro, South Carolina. – https://t.co/UIFFxFqYsy pic.twitter.com/SAWrQZI6DW

The Mobley family were awarded a $1.5 million settlement after suing the hospital and Shanara had three children since the abduction. The hospital upped their security measures following the abduction of Kamiyah and also instituted kidnapping drills.

The authorities are asking the public and the media to give the 18-year-old Kamiyah Mobley and her biological family space as they process the news. The tale has understandably warmed hearts and given hope to many families of kidnapped and missing children.

[Featured Image by Jacksonville Sheriff’s Department]

This article was sourced from http://newsxlive.com