NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — After their week on the run ended Monday night, the Queens woman who allegedly took her own children from child welfare last week spoke out Tuesday and made some strong accusations while in police custody.
Shanel Nadal, 28, was arrested in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania along with the eight children’s biological father, Nephra Payne. The children were unharmed and are now in the custody of Dauphin County Children and Youth Services.READ MORE: Family, Friends, Community Lay Daunte Wright To Rest In Minneapolis
“Any mother who’s going through this — do what you got to do to protect your kids,” Nadal told reporters, including CBS 2’s Christine Sloan. “I love y’all so much. You know what mommy doing. Mommy did this for y’all.”
Shackled and looking tired, Nadal said “make sure you don’t abuse them no more” before getting into a police cruiser. When asked by a reporter who she believed was abusing her kids, Nadal replied “foster care and I’m tired of it.”
New York City’s Administration for Children’s Services said it has not received any complaints against the foster parents.
Nadal, her children and their father Nephra Payne were found by police as they prepared to spend the night inside a parked black van, which had no plates.
NYPD detectives said a tip brought them to the neighborhood and that when they got to the area, it looked like the family was about to turn in for the night.
Police say Nadal snuck them out of the Forestdale Child Agency in Forest Hills during what was supposed to be a supervised group visit last week.READ MORE: COVID Impact: Jersey City Schools In-Person Learning Back On, But Some Parents Have Concerns About Phased-In Approach
Investigators say Nadal and Payne spent the last week first driving to South Carolina, where they lived previously, and then back north to Harrisburg where Payne has family.
Nadal lost custody following allegations of abuse by Payne.
The Payne siblings, seven brothers named Nephra and one sister named Nefertiti, range in age from 11 months to 11-years-old.
All of the children were in foster care at the time of their abduction.
A separate investigation into how the children were absconded Sept. 19 from Forestdale Child Agency in Queens during a supervised visit is still continuing.
The city’s Administration for Children’s Services, which hired the agency to host the visit, said, “ACS is reviewing with the foster care agency the protocols it has in place for supervised visits and its campus security system. We will share the results of that investigation once it is completed.”
Nadal is being held on $200,000 bail. The Dauphin County District Attorney says Nadal’s extradition hearing is set for next week. Payne collapsed while in custody and was taken to Harrisburg Hospital. He still faces arraignment.MORE NEWS: Earth Day: Going Vertical In Newark, Innovative AeroFarms Grows More With Less
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