JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Shanara Mobley, a teenage mother when her baby was kidnapped in the summer of 1998, sued what was then University Medical Center and received a settlement reported to be $1.5 million.
Kamiyah Mobley was kidnapped from the hospital, now known as UF Health Jacksonville, by a woman dressed as a nurse who befriended the young mother and walked out with the baby.
The I-TEAM has also learned details of the settlement the hospital reached with Shanara Mobley after the kidnapping. It was widely reported as a $1.5 million settlement. The once-confidential settlement calls for the mother to get monthly payments of $3,644 through July 2020, or about $875,000 over the lifetime of the payout.
News4Jax found documentation that in 2002, when Shanara Mobley was only 20 years old, she sold about half of her remaining settlement amount to a third party, Deborah H. Miller, in order to obtain a lump-sum payout of $437,000.
Attorney Mitch Stone, who is not affiliated with the case, provided some perspective on why she would have accepted that deal.
"You got to remember this happened 18 years ago, so the amount of money that was settled 18 years ago probably would have been considered a lot of money," Stone said. "Today, after 18 years of inflation and various things with our economy, It may not seem as much."
The settlement also stipulated that if Kamiyah Mobley was found alive on or before her 18th birthday and properly identified through DNA, Shanara Mobley would get a "$307,644 guaranteed lump sum."
What is not known is if that money is still there and if the mother is entitled to it, or the child?
"At the time that this order says it will go to one or the other," Stone said. "So now that we're six months down the road, the question is: Who has a right to that and, realistically, if there is a contest, a court would have to decide that but I would hope a mother, daughter would figure out an equitable way of resolving that."
"It's possible that $300,000 was already paid to Shanara Mobley since on the child's 18th birthday last summer, we didn't know what happened to Kamiyah Mobley.
News4Jax tried to reach Shanara Mobley and attorneys for Alexis Manigo on Friday, but neither responded by the end of the day.
Birth mom appreciates community support
The father's side of the family has spoken publicly, as has Manigo and some of the family that raised her. The teenager has said she is grateful for the love of a new family, but is steadfastly defending the woman who raised her, Gloria Williams.
Williams, 51, who was extradited this week from South Carolina, is being held in an isolation cell in the Duval County jail. A judge ordered her held without bond on charges of kidnapping and interference with custody.
On social media, people continue to post support not only for Manigo, but also her birth mother, Shanara Mobley, who was a teenager herself when her baby was taken.
In a Facebook post on Thursday, Shanara Mobley thanked "everybody that's been supporting me." It was the first the community heard from the birth mother.
"I'(m) really confused and depressed right now. The tears won't stop," Shanara Mobley posted. "I see my baby wanting this lady in her life and not me. When I founded out about my baby, I stopped everything and got to where u are and still hurting like that 16-year-old little girl all over again. Kamiyah, if u see this, know u are your mother's child. Your whole character is me and u can never get rid of that. Love u Babygirl."