-- Young Woman from South Carolina Found a Dark Secret from the Past, That Changed Her Life Forever

For a girl who’s excited to be a responsible woman, being able to go to college and to get the job of her dreams appears to be a logical plan. With a positive outlook in life and a determined attitude, Alexis Manigo from South Carolina thought that achieving her goals was an easy feat. She has a loving and responsible mom who’s always there to guide and support her career endeavors. All she ever wanted was to give back the love.

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But, as this young woman was about to show her gratitude to the single mom who raised her alone by searching for a job while aspiring to go to college, she had no idea that she would stumble upon a dark secret from her childhood that had been kept from her for almost two decades. The revelation shook her world to its core and the events that followed can be only described as a cut between a beautiful dream and a nightmare.
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A Wonderful Childhood

Alexis Manigo grew up in the beautiful and peaceful community of Walterboro, South Carolina. She was raised by Gloria Williams, a single mom who gave her everything she needed. Though she grew up without a father figure, her adorable mother did everything she can so that she would never feel incomplete.

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Alexis has two older brothers who also treated her like a princess. She was the apple of the family's eye in the house. Her mom even nicknamed her as a “doll baby”. Although they don’t live like the rich and the famous, Alexis was extremely thankful for everything they had. It was a challenge for her mother to raise them, given her past experiences in her married life.
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A Dark Past

Long before Alexis came, Gloria Williams' life was a living hell. Her marriage had failed and she was lucky enough to get custody of her two sons. Although she didn’t have an idea on how she would raise her two kids alone, Gloria knew that she wouldn’t be able to live without them.


Just as the luck was beginning to turn to her favor, Gloria met Charles Manigo. He was a natural charmer. Charles was extremely nice to her as well as to her sons. It didn’t take long for Gloria to fall in love with him. But when they decided to live together under one roof, that’s when the horror began.
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Real Face

The sweet and loving boyfriend slowly showed his true colors. Charles began to abuse her verbally. Gloria thought she can just shrug those abusive words off. Although she was hurt, she tried to hide her pain from her kids.

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Gloria kept on hoping that her relationship with her boyfriend will rekindle. After all, she had known him as a nice and loving guy. Every night, she prayed that Charles will become the man he used to be. But when he started to hurt her physically, Gloria felt that she was on the journey back to hell once again.
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Holding On

Still wanting to save her relationship with Charles Manigo, Gloria learned to accept her boyfriend’s personality. He was sweet when he’s in the mood and he still provided for the family. Her two sons were aware of their relationship but decided to keep silent about it.

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Whenever Charles beat her, she would often hide her bruises by using makeup or by concealing them beneath her clothes. But after some time, she found it hard to fool everyone around her that everything’s going fine. But Gloria couldn’t just give up. She may be a fool to the eyes of many, but the hope in her heart was still there.
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Losing Everything

As the years went by, it became harder and harder for Gloria to pretend that everything’s fine. Her growing sons had noticed her bruises and they began to ask questions. Soon enough, Charles began to hurt her sons as well. It was too much for the mother who tried to take everything alone. But her pain didn’t end there.

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When her ex-husband got the news that she was living with an abusive boyfriend, he stepped into their lives once again and demanded custody of her two sons. His argument was strong enough. The boys were growing in a violent environment. Needless to say, Gloria was left devastated. But then something happened.
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Was it a Sign?

In 1998, Gloria got pregnant. She was on the verge of leaving her boyfriend but took her condition as a sign that there’s still hope for the relationship. He was a bad man, but she loved him with all her heart. In her mind, her bruises will heal. She was determined never to give up on him. Her body can take those punches anyway.

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Charles told her in the past that he wanted a baby. Gloria thought that now that it had happened, he will change and love her like he used to do. But then, she was wrong. Charles continued to beat her, stealing her self-respect and her self-esteem. She was pregnant with his baby and yet he showed no mercy. Finally, Gloria had given up her guard. At last, the abusive relationship came to an end. She was ready to face a new chapter of her life.
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Struggling to Build a Home

So beautiful and with a smile that can melt every mother’s heart, Alexis brought back the joy to Gloria’s life. Her sons came to her again when they found out she had ended her relationship with Charles Manigo. After all that she’s been through, Gloria was able to smile again because of her three children.

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During her relationship with Manigo, Gloria had learned many lessons. And now, she had enough of those men. Instead of falling into depression, Gloria sought help from her family. She applied for a job and began to live anew. Things were looking up.
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A Source of Inspiration

Whenever Gloria thought that the world had turned its back on her, little Alexis would come to her and hug her. Her sons were mostly away because of school and the little girl soon became her source of inspiration. She promised to herself that even if her life were hard, she will never allow it to happen to her children, especially to Alexis.

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Fortunately, the siblings grew close to each other. The brothers and the sister shared a strong kind of bond. Perhaps, in their young minds, they knew that their mother had endured too much pain and heartache from Charles Manigo. All they ever wanted was to make her feel that she has them and that they love her. The family tried to live as normal as they can.
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Exploring the World

Alexis didn’t have too much memory of Charles Manigo. When she spoke her first words, when she learned to walk on her own, her mother Gloria who was always there for her, loved and compassionate. Her brothers were added delight.

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When she went to learn her ABCs, Alexis remembered how patient her mom had been with her. She accompanied her to her kindergarten and treated her like a princess. They were not rich, but Gloria provided her with everything a kid could wish for. Their house was full of love.
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The Years Have Flown Away

Alexis was raised as a nice, young woman. Although she didn’t grow up with a father figure, the love of her mom and her brothers were enough for her. She had many friends in their little community as well. In her school, she was one of the brightest students.

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Beautiful, kind and sweet, it was not surprising that young men wanted to get her attention. When she was sixteen, Gloria permitted her to take suitors. One man was lucky enough to win her heart. With a loving family and a supportive boyfriend, there’s only one thing she could wish for. She wanted to go to college. And for that dream, she would need a job.
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Going After Her Dreams

Because her mom was the only one who provides for the family, Alexis knew she had to get a job to support her studies. Her mom had even expressed her desire to accompany her in checking the colleges near their hometown. She wanted to help her and thought of a surprise.

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With the help of her friends, Alexis tried her luck and looked for a job. It seemed easy. But when she was asked to provide the necessary requirements, it was then that her nightmare began.
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Baffled and Confused

For sixteen years, Alexis had never given much thought to her personal documents. But when she was asked to submit her social security number, she found it hard to get one. All she had was her birth certificate. Without a social security number, her dream of going to college will just be a dream.

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Confused and wondering why she was having a hard time obtaining proof of identification, Alexis thought of the only person who can help her. Her mom had always known the answer to her problems. Intending only to ask for her assistance, Alexis had no idea that life will never be the same for her afterward.
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A Dark Secret Was Finally Revealed

Sitting side by side on the porch of their house, Gloria took all of her courage, to tell the truth to Alexis. “I am not your mother.” The words were whispered but it sounded like thunder to the young woman’s ear. She looked at her mom’s solemn face and knew she wasn’t joking. Why would she?

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It took a few minutes for Alexis to understand what her mother was saying. She was not a little kid anymore, but she felt like crying. What made her heart break even more was that she wasn’t even adopted. The situation was far worse than that.
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Snatched Away from Her Parents

Perhaps, Gloria had rehearsed everything for years. Alexis looked at her face and she appeared so calm. She realized that her mother knew the moment of revelation would eventually come.


What she was hearing was applicable only in movies. At least, that’s what Alexis thought. Gloria Williams, the woman she had loved and respected for so long, was not her biological mother. She was not adopted, not legally.
She was kidnapped.
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Her Real Identity

On July 10, 1998, Alexis Manigo was born in a hospital in Jacksonville. She was the daughter of Shanara Mobley who was just sixteen years old at the time of delivery. Her father goes by the name Craig Aiken. The couple named their daughter Kamiyah Mobley.

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She was just 8 hours old when she was stolen from the hospital. The frantic mother was just recovering and she didn’t even have a photo of her as a baby. The kidnapping became sensational and even sparked a series of a nationwide manhunt.
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The Culprit

Shanara Mobley told the police what happened on the day her baby was kidnapped. According to her, a woman who wore a nurse uniform went in and asked her how she was feeling. Still a little groggy, Shanara failed to notice that the woman had a different purpose.

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Because she was only sixteen at that time, the young mother even shared to the nurse that she was confused and unsure of what will happen to her. Her boyfriend, Craig Aiken, was incarcerated that time because he impregnated her when she was only fifteen. The nurse, who looked like she was in her mid-thirties, even told her some words of wisdom. Moreover, she assisted her in changing her hospital gown. Little did she know everything was just a pretense to her evil plan.
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Gone So Fast

Shanara didn’t even bother to ask the name of the nurse. She was confident that she was one of the medical staff in the hospital. So when the woman told her that she needed to take the baby because she seemed sick, she didn’t even think twice. Shanara, young, confused and exhausted, trusted her with all her heart.

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The woman went outside the room with her adorable baby. There was no sign of haste in her movement. She was calm and confident. No one even got suspicious. It was the last time Shanara saw her little Kamiyah. The culprit, who was no other than Gloria Williams, disappeared with no trace at all.
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The Kidnapper

Witnesses of the kidnapping incident had said the same thing about the strange woman. They have noticed that she was wearing a wig and thick eyeglasses, evidently to conceal her real identity.

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The authorities worked on finding the culprit and the baby. However, all they have was a computer-generated composite of her face. To make it easier for the police and other people to identify her, her distinctive features were included in reports. Little Kamiyah had Mongolian spots and an umbilical hernia. However, the search led to nowhere.
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No Trace at All

For a first-time kidnapper, it was such a stroke of luck that Gloria Williams had successfully carried out her evil plan. No one at that time understood what went into her mind and why she did that heinous crime.

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Still not on her right mind, she drove her car with the baby with no definite destination at all. She was desperate, she was depressed but she knew she had to get away fast. Then, just like a phantom, even the police had a hard time to track where she went.
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At All-Cause

For a parent, losing a kid is the worst kind of nightmare. Shanara can’t help but blame herself for being so young, trusting and naïve. If she had been more vigilant, perhaps Kamiyah will never be stolen from her.

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At the height of her depression, her family and friends, along with the government, raised the money they can use as a reward to anyone who can give them a lead to the baby’s whereabouts. But with no clear picture of the baby as well as the kidnapper, they were like searching a needle in a haystack.
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Getting Hopeless

In the first few months, Shanara and Drake relied on the help of the police and the media. The kidnapping incident was big news in Jacksonville and it had sparked terrors in the heart of the resident. On national TV, the young couple cried and pleaded for the return of their baby. But their efforts went to no avail.

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With the help of their families and friends, they walked the entire state, distributing and posting the computer-generated image of the baby. They asked help from other organizations in the country. But as years went by, their hopes of finding their baby began to fade away. Even the policemen who were investigating the case had to take on another. The community soon forgot the incident. But for the devastated parents, what happened will burn in their memories forever.
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The Beginning of a Lie

On that fateful day, Gloria Williams was totally shocked when she finally realized what she did. From the hospital in Jacksonville, she took 17 and headed into Walterboro. She felt like she was on auto-pilot with no plans, nothing at all.

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When she recovered, Gloria showed up to her parents with the newborn baby in her arms. In her mind, the damage has been done. She declared that Kamiyah is her daughter and changed her name to Alexis Manigo. With the beautiful baby in her life now, Gloria felt very keen to start a new life. She started the next chapter by breaking up with her abusive boyfriend, Charles.
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A Daughter’s Love

When Gloria Williams finished her confession, Alexis was crying. It was a total shock. But looking at the woman who had raised her alone, the young woman was surprised to feel no remorse at all. From the earliest moment she could remember, her mom had been the kindest and the most loving mother in the world. She could not find in her heart to hate her.

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After the revelation, Alexis didn’t find the courage to come after her biological parents. She could have easily found them if she wants to, but something in her was telling her not to. She was not ready to face the truth. But as they say, the truth, no matter how long it takes to be unveiled, will eventually come out in the end.
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Finally Taking the Step

Time quickly went by. Unlike what Gloria had feared for so many years, the revelation had little effect on the mother-daughter relationship. However, Gloria knew that sooner or later, Alexis would no longer be able to hold the curiosity of finding out about her real parents and family. And she was right.

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Alexis was already 17 years old when she decided to connect for the first time to her biological mother. She easily found the contact along with the news about her kidnapping back in 1998 online. When she heard her mother’s voice for the first time, Alexis couldn’t think of something to say so she dropped the call. Another year went by before the authorities have found a lead.
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Seeking Truth

On January 2017, Gloria Williams received the call she had feared all her life. It was from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office. The authorities wanted to see her as well as her daughter Alexis. Although she knew what was about to happen, she calmly told her daughter that they needed to show up together.


Fearing for what will happen, Alexis pleaded Williams to run away. In the state, kidnapping is a serious crime and the young woman was almost sure Williams would be punished. She couldn’t take that. However, her mom was insistent, saying, it’s now or never. When they reached the Sheriff’s office, a DNA sample was collected. Needless to say, the result sealed William’s fate.
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The Arrest

Since the police had found out through DNA testing that Alexis wasn’t Williams’ biological daughter, they performed another test to a potential match. There were over 2,000 cases of child kidnapping incident. However, with the tips they have gathered, the options had been narrowed down.


When Alexis Manigo matched the sample from Shanara Mobley, the result was crystal clear. It’s as if the room had instantly sprung to a motion. In no time at all, police officers were assigned to contact the Mobley family to share the good news. But as it goes, it was not good news for Williams. She was arrested.
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The News of a Lifetime

Since her 8-hour old baby vanished in the hospital in 1998, Shanara Mobley hadn’t recovered her peace of mind. She was frantic and hysterical when she realized that her baby was kidnapped and that she had even talked with the culprit in a friendly manner.


When the police had given up on the case, Shanara never did. Every year, she celebrated Kamiyah’s birthday with a cake, hoping against hope that one day, she would still find her. She began to smile again years after the abduction, but inside, she was frozen. Eighteen long years, finally, the police officers delivered her the news she had been praying for every night. Words were not enough to describe what she felt on that day.
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The Missing Piece

Shanara was only sixteen when she lost baby Kamiyah. Her boyfriend Drake was at the jail at that time because she was just a minor when he impregnated her. Drake was seven years older. As the authorities were searching for clues, the Mobley and Aiken family had also been suspected. With the pain she was feeling, Shanara had to endure being judged by everyone around her for the loss of her baby.


It was excruciating to sleep every night and she had to take sleeping pills. That carried on for almost five years until another daughter was given to her. LaShawnye is Kamiyah’s sister. In the years that followed, Christopher, Chrisanna, Savannah, and Journye also came into her life. Although her children bring her joy and love, there’s still a missing part of her that will never be complete. Then, the heavens finally answered her prayers. The kidnapper had been arrested.
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Amazingly Raised

The authorities at Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office were amazed to see that Kamiyah, who willingly goes by the name Alexis Manigo, appeared healthy and unharmed. Judging by the way the young woman talked to her kidnapper mom, they can say that they share a strong bond.


But laws are laws. No matter how well Williams had raised Kamiyah, she still has to face the judgment. She had snatched her away from an innocent family and no one knows how much the Mobley and the Aikens have suffered because of her wrongdoings. It’s high time to set things straight.
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The Most-Awaited Reunion

Kamiyah Mobley, despite the tumultuous events around her, had connected with her biological family over Face Time and planned for a reunion. They have waited for so long and they can’t wait another day to do so. Shanara was almost floating on air when she saw her baby who was now a young and beautiful woman.

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The first hug between Shanara and Kamiyah had made almost everyone wept. The emotions that were held inside for eighteen years had been poured out. The biological mother didn’t know where to start, what to say, she just cried. She felt too happy to speak. Shanara kept on telling herself that they will catch everything up in the days to come. However, she had no idea that it would never be that easy.
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Caught in Between

There was no doubt in Kamiyah’s heart that she wanted to know more about her biological family. She had learned that she had brothers and sisters. She grew up with Williams’ two sons who loved her dearly. It was nice to know after all these years that she has a big family. However, no matter how much she wanted to make everything alright, she can’t help but think of Williams’ situation.

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The mother she’d known for 18 years was charged with kidnapping and federal custody interference. She is in jail and is facing the possibility of a life sentence. Kamiyah knew she couldn’t take it.
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Never To Turn Her Back

Despite knowing the truth about her identity, Kamiyah couldn’t feel any hatred for Williams. She had given her life for her and her brothers. Williams raised them as religious, friendly and compassionate people. Even their neighbors in the community can testify that she was not a bad person.

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Perhaps, once in her life, she had committed a sin. But for Kamiyah, the reason behind Williams’ guilt was understandable and forgivable. However, not everyone would understand what she’d been through.
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The Reason Why

A week before Shanara gave birth to Kamiyah, poor Williams had suffered a miscarriage. She was beaten and abused and was devastated when her two sons were taken away from him. From South Carolina, she had no clear idea why she ended up in Jacksonville, Florida.

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To kidnap an innocent baby from Shanara Mobley wasn’t planned as well. At that moment, Williams thought that she had nothing, that she had no one to turn on to. However, no matter how much she loved Kamiyah, her story appeared as a lame excuse on the court.
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Asking for Forgiveness

In court trials, Gloria Williams had shared about her depressing life before the incident. She said that there were multiples times in the past when she regretted her haste decisions. She had thoughts of returning the baby to the frantic parents who were searching for her.

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But every time she looked at Alexis, she couldn’t find it in her heart to do so. Her mind told her to do what is right, but her heart can’t bear the pain of losing another child again. Williams asked for forgiveness, admitting that her act had ruined another mother, another family. But Shanara Mobley was not ready to forgive her. Worse, the mother who had been robbed of happiness and peace of mind thinks she can never forgive her as long as she lives.
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Supporting Her All the Way

During the trial, Kamiyah made it clear to everyone that she would never turn her back on the woman who raised and loved her as if she was her own. She always visits her in jail and talk to her every day. She also pleaded that the punishment for Williams will be lighter than what her biological family was seeking, either a life sentence or death.

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For Mobley and Aiken family, Williams still continues to rob them of their daughter. Shanara shared in an interview how heartbreaking it is to compete with a kidnapper for the attention of their daughter. Although Alexis had legally adopted her birth name, the truth still remains. She will always treat Gloria Williams as her mom.
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Uncertain Future

With the help of the authorities, Kamiyah Mobley obtained the necessary documents needed so that she could go to college and apply for a job. In the years that followed after the arrest of Williams, her relationship with her mother had experienced its own share of ups and down. Shanara, up to this point, was hurting that Kamiyah was still communicating with her abductor. She wished for her daughter to cut ties with Williams so that they can start a new life with them.

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Gloria Williams was sentenced to serve 18 years in prison. It was a sad ending for a woman who had been abused in the past. But no matter what her reasons were, she simply couldn’t escape the reality. She’s already in her late 50’s. Her battle will start in prison. Shanara, on the other hand, has to stay strong and to be patient. She keeps on hoping that one day, Kamiyah will love her the same way she loved the mother she’d known in the past.

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