Operation: Bring My'taeh Home

Removal State: Florida

#BringMy'taehHome

URGENT CALL TO ACTION

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 Call to Action:

"We demand an Investigation, from a third-party, into the illegal removal of My'taeh Tuggles. Further, we demand that the petition be dismissed and My'taeh be returned home safely to her mother immediately." 

Donate To Legal Defense Fund

This is so unfair. They took my baby"- Shaletta Thomas, mother 

Hi my name is Shaletta Thomas and I’m originally from Chicago, IL. I moved to New Port Richey, Florida in March of 2020 with my now husband and 8-year-old daughter My’taeh. I work as a stockbroker and have an online call center with 100 agents. My husband and I worked hard to build a life that we are proud of My’taeh is the center of our life. She is literally my best friend. There is nothing that she desired that we did not provide. 

Before my husband and I got married, I dated a man that works as an officer with the Clearwater Police Department in Florida. After we separated, I moved on with my life, but he was unable to. On 7/2/21, while riding in the car with my husband and daughter, I was pulled over by my ex-boyfriend. He pulled me over and abused his power and badge to arrest me for a DUI when I had not had an ounce of alcohol that day. I was wrongfully arrested and taken to jail. Due to my child being in the car, he also charged me with child endangerment which triggered a report to CPS. This is where this nightmare begins. The nightmare I pray I wake up from every second of the day.

A week later, Kendall Giannone, CPI worker with the Pasco Sheriff's Office Child Protection Investigation Division, arrived at my home to initiate the malicious report that was made to CPS due to my ex-boyfriends actions. When the CPI worker arrived at my home to investigate these false allegations, I immediately denied her access to my child. We were prepared to use all the resources at our disposal to shield My’Taeh from any further trauma. The CPI worker persisted and I stood my ground. Then the worker looked at me and said “You’re going to be the next black bitch that looses her kids because you’re not complying”. I slammed the door in her face not realizing that this person had the power to make this statement a reality. I didn’t speak to her again until October 14, 2021. 

The worker continued to visit My’Taeh at school because I refused to cooperate with the investigation. My’taeh began to miss the bus on purpose because she was terrified that the worker may kidnap her from school. I reassured her that she was safe and that we had nothing to worry about. After being unable to find any evidence of abuse or neglect, I was contacted by the CPI worker informing me that my case would be closed. 

On October 8, 2021 Pasco County CPS received a report due to an argument my husband and I had. The same worker from the prior case that told me “You’re going to be the next black bitch that looses her kids because you’re not complying” was assigned to this new report. My child was not home and did not witness the incident but the worker failed to complete a thorough assessment to assertion the facts of the case.  Due to her personal vendetta against me, she falsified my child’s statement during her interview and fabricated the petition that was used to legally kidnap My’Taeh from school on October 14, 2021. I was notified through a text message that my baby was not coming home that day. If I would have known that, I would have hugged my baby a little longer before she went to school.

Can You Imagine Getting This Text? 

When I found out My’taeh was taken, I hyperventilated… I felt lost... I was in disbelief... and I was heartbroken. It didn’t seem real, and I could not wrap my mind around this being legal. It took a week for me to see her again. When I laid eyes on my baby, we could not help but to cry. I apologized for not being able to protect her and for not believing her when she tried to warn me about the worker’s intent to take her from school. I must admit, the hardest part was having to leave her after that first visit. I promised her that I would do everything in my power to get her back. That is a promise I intend to keep until my last breath. 

My daughter was immediately placed with a teacher from her school that I did not offer as a placement option. My baby was sleeping on an air mattress when she has her own bed at home. I have had 4 family members who have been denied as placement options without an explanation. 

Now… 

My’taeh’s father, who has not been in her life for the last 3 years was contacted by CPS to inform him that My’Taeh was in state’s custody. He offered his mother as a placement option and she was immediately assessed. I have had a strained relationship with My’Teah grandmother and the CPI worker was able to find an ally in her quest to punish me for not complying. My child has become collateral in all of this. 

The grandmother lives 4 hours away and no one is thinking about the impact this move will have on the relationship between my child and I. All of the placement options I provided are closer than the grandmother’s home. My’Taeh will have to switch schools and she will no longer be able to go to gymnastics or play on her soccer team. Her father is a felon, and his mother is a former drug addict. She has attempted on numerous occasions to try to take my daughter from me despite me allowing her time with my daughter. She disrespects me and believes she can do a better job of raising my child than I can. Kendall obviously failed to properly vet this placement option and is now putting my child’s safety at risk. A Judge has not found that I have abused or neglected my child, yet CPS filed a motion to give custody of my daughter to her grandmother at the next court hearing on November 12, 2021. 

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This is a Nightmare
My Truth- Shaletta Thomas
0:46
 

There Is More…

During an unwarranted forensic interview, it was reported that my child has now stated she has been physically abused by me. My daughter doesn’t even get spankings, so I know for a fact that this is another attempt by this worker to ensure I loose my child. Look at my baby, she is one of the happiest children you will ever meet. 

My'taeh...

Mommy Is Coming For You 

I am telling my story because I promised my baby I would do everything in my power to get her back. 

I Can No Longer Be Silent  

Stand With Ms. Thomas by Contacting The Person with the Power to End This Nightmare:

Shevaun Harris, Secretary 

Florida Department of Children and Families Services
1317 Winewood Boulevard 
Building 1, Room 202
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Phone: 850-487-1111
Email: [email protected]

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