18-years after she was stolen from the Florida hospital where she was born, Kamiyah Mobley has given her first TV interview, pleading for her kidnapper to be set free.
Gloria Williams allegedly abducted Mobley just hours after she was born in 1998 and raised her as her own child in South Carolina. Mobley spoke to ABC News in the US about her relationship with Williams, and pleaded that she be set free. Though she identified as Alexis Manigo, the name given to her by Williams, she said it was fine for people to call her by her birth name.
"I understand what she did was wrong, but just don’t lock her up and throw away the key," Manigo told ABC News' Good Morning America.
"She loved me for 18 years, she cared for me for 18 years," Mobley said. "I just want people to realise that."
She added that despite everything that had happened, she still thought of Williams as 'Mom'.
"She made one mistake, but I was loved," Manigo said. "From that one mistake, I was given the best life."
"I had everything I ever needed, wanted, I had love especially. There is no price you can put on the love that was given to me."
Mobley recently had an emotional reunion with her biological parents. She spent 45 minutes with her birth parents, Craig Aiken and Shanara Mobley, at the Walterboro Police Department in South Carolina.
“I told her I was glad to see her and that I loved her,” Aiken told reporters afterward, reports NY Daily News.
“The first meeting was beautiful. It’s a feeling that you can’t explain.”
On July 20, 1998, Mobley was just eight hours old when Gloria Williams, posing as a nurse, snatched her from the hospital.
Williams, now 51, raised the child as her own, however this week she was arrested after the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a tip off.
DNA tests have reportedly confirmed her identity.
Following her arrest, the teen, who has only ever known Williams as her mother, rushed to the detention centre where she is being held, and reportedly sobbed as she spoke to her through a mesh screen.
“I love you, Momma,” she said.
According to CNN the teen "had an inclination beginning a couple of months ago", that she may have been abducted.
"She's taking it as well as you can imagine," Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said. "She has a lot to process. She has a lot to think about."
In an emotional Facebook post over the weekend, Mobley declared, "My mother is no felon".
“She raised me with everything I needed and most of all everything I wanted... The ignorant ones won’t understand that.”
Williams has been charged with kidnapping and interference with custody and is facing life in prison if convicted.