This case reminds us of poor Shaniya Davis.
A Jacksonville Beach mother is being held in a Georgia jail after being accused of repeatedly selling sex with her 6-year-old daughter in exchange for drugs and money, an allegation the custodial grandmother disputes.
Police have also charged two men in the case with capital sexual battery, while at least one other suspect is being sought.
Dalina J. Nicholas, 35, is being held on a child-neglect warrant in the investigation, which began in early January with a tip about the sexual abuse. Nicholas was arrested in Muscogee County, Ga., as a fugitive from justice and will be extradited back to Jacksonville Beach as early as this week. The circumstances of how Nicholas was arrested are unknown.
The tip about the abuse came from a homeless man who flagged down a passing police officer and told him what had been going on in the home, said Sgt. Mark Evans, the lead detective in the case. The man said he’d been to the home to use drugs in the past and was aware of the abuse.
Police launched an investigation and then sought to arrest Nicholas after an interview with the daughter, who gave them details of sexual and physical abuse. Nicholas, by that time, had fled the area. The child and a sibling were being cared for by Nicholas’ mother and father.
The child, who was 6 at the time of the allegations and just turned 7, remains in the custody of the grandparents. She is receiving therapy and other treatment from state child welfare agencies, said John Harrell, a spokesman with the Department of Children and Families.
Jacksonville Beach Police Chief Bruce Thomason said Nicholas lived in subsidized housing in the 400 block of Sixth Street South and supported herself and a drug habit by selling her daughter for various sex acts. Witnesses told police drugs were frequently used in the home, where Nicholas let people stay.
“I can’t think of an adjective that’s bad enough to describe [the allegations],” Thomason said. “Anyone who would harm a child is just beneath contempt.”
But Nicholas’ mother, who the Times-Union is not naming because she has temporary custody of the girl and a suspect still is at large, said her daughter and granddaughter were both sexually abused by drug dealers. She said her daughter, who she described as a recovering drug addict, did not condone or know about the abuse of her daughter. She said the child could verify the story.
“These drug dealers kept returning and basically they took over her home,” the child’s grandmother said. “She was as much a victim as her daughter was.”
After police received the initial tip, they went to the home and interviewed Nicholas, who denied the allegations. The child and her sibling were with their grandparents, who were given temporary custody after the Department of Children and Families got involved.
A child protection team interview with the victim gave police additional information that led them to seek the mother’s arrest, Evans said.
“It was heartbreaking … to hear the things that this little girl said had taken place,” Evans said.
Quinn M. Brooks, 56, of Jacksonville and John F. Hagans, 47, who is homeless, were charge last month with sexual battery in the case, police said Monday. They are being held in the Duval County jail.
Hagans, also known as Mute, was interviewed by police in mid-February. He told police he lived with Nicholas and her daughter in the past, but he denied having any sexual contact with the girl.
Hagans told police there were many people in and out of the home and that drugs were frequently used there. Brooks was arrested last week after a witness identified him as one of the men involved with the victim.
Harrell said this morning his agency has completed its investigation of the case, but he could not release details due to confidentiality laws.
Harrell said his agency continues to work with police and that the child and her caregivers are being provided services by the Children’s Home Society.
“This child has obviously been through so much,” Harrell said. “These are terrible allegations that are of great concern to us and great concern to the community.”
Court records show that Nicholas has been arrested at least once in the Jacksonville area. She was charged in 2002 with possession of maryjane and was fined after pleading guilty.
Records show Hagans has been arrested at least 35 times in Florida since 1983. His convictions include grand larceny, robbery and coke possession. Brooks has been arrested 10 times, with convictions for trespassing and dealing in stolen property.
Sounds like the grandmother’s enabling her junkie daughter is half the problem. Your daughter is responsible for her child! SMH. We just pray this kid gets the help and care that she needs. She’s lucky to be alive considering the circumstances.
And her mother and those two nasty men both belong on an express train to HELL!