Girl, 9, Confined in Home for Years Had To Beg for Food, Mom Arrested: Cops


A young Florida girl was confined to her home for years and needed to regularly beg for food up until her mother’s arrest, according to police reports.

Miami-Dade police were alerted to alleged cases of child abuse at a home in the Sunset neighborhood of the city following an investigation by child services.

According to ABC affiliate WPLG, the Florida Department of Children and Families investigated Kelli McGriff-Williams, 42, on August 26.

A Miami-Dade arrest report obtained by the network stated that stated the girl, now 9, had been confined to the house since 2017.

A mugshot of Kelli McGriff-Williams. The mother is alleged to have confined her daughter to their Florida home for years.
Police handout

During this time, McGriff-Williams allegedly refused to take her daughter out of their home to visit the doctor, despite her being ill.

Police spoke to the child’s father on August 30, and he also repeated allegations of child neglect. He then said he had been trying to get custody of his daughter through the state court system since 2017.

A child protection team from the University of Miami interviewed the girl and said she had experienced “child neglect, medical neglect, mental injury, and educational neglect,” according to the police report obtained by WPLG.

The same report did not state whether the girl had been placed in the custody of her father, a different relative or a child protection agency.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), child abuse and neglect are common crimes in the U.S.

The CDC said: “At least one in seven children have experienced child abuse or neglect in the past year (2020) in the United States.

“This is likely an underestimate because many cases are unreported. In 2020, 1,750 children died of abuse and neglect in the United States.”

Police apprehended McGriff-Williams on September 1, as she was set to be discharged from the Jackson South Medical Center’s behavioral unit, according to WPLG.

According to inmate information seen by Newsweek, McGriff-Williams was charged with child neglect on Sunday, September 3.

The same inmate information revealed she had also been charged with grand theft in the third degree. McGriff-Williams is now being held on a $5,000 bond.

According to the law firm GoldmanWetzel, child abuse and child neglect are classified as felonies in Florida.

The law firm added: “If there are no aggravating factors, child abuse and child neglect are considered third-degree felonies. Punishments can result in up to five years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $5,000. More severe forms of child abuse and neglect will make penalties more severe.”

Newsweek has contacted Miami-Dade police for comment via email.


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