FLORENCE, Ala. (AP) – A Florida couple was charged Wednesday with 700 counts of child abuse, sexual abuse and other crimes against 11 children they adopted or fostered for seven years while living in Alabama.
Florence Police detective Sgt. Brad Holmes told local media that 47-year-old Daniel W. Spurgeon faces 388 counts. His 52-year-old wife, Jenise Spurgeon, faces 312 counts.
Both are jailed in Fort Myers, Florida, where they have pleaded not guilty to child abuse charges. Jenise Spurgeon was arrested Wednesday on the Alabama warrants during a court hearing in Florida. Holmes said Daniel Spurgeon would be arrested on the Alabama warrants if he posts bail in Florida.
It’s unclear if either has a lawyer.
Holmes said police seek to have both of them returned to Alabama.
Florence police have been investigating since they were contacted last summer about crimes the couple committed in Cape Coral, Florida.
“Their investigation led detectives to believe that abuse had occurred in Alabama while the couple lives in the Florence area,” Holmes said.
He said suspected victims ranged in age from toddlers to teenagers. The couple moved to Florida in 2015. Police in Cape Coral began investigating them after they responded to a call regarding two intoxicated teenagers in summer 2016.
Daniel Spurgeon is charged with 115 counts of first-degree sex abuse, 122 counts of child abuse, four counts of first-degree sodomy, four counts of sexual torture, three counts of domestic violence by strangulation or suffocation, six counts of first-degree rape, 115 counts of enticing a child for immoral purposes, six counts of incest and 11 counts of first-degree human trafficking 2 counts of sexual abuse of a child under the age of 12.
Jenise Spurgeon is charged with 100 counts of child abuse, one count of domestic violence by strangulation or suffocation, 11 counts of first-degree human trafficking, 100 counts of endangering the welfare of a child and 100 counts of enticing a child for immoral purposes.
Holmes said Florence police have conducted extensive interviews, resulting in thousands of pages of documentation.
“We were very cautious not to rush to judgment, to be extremely thorough,” he said.
Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.