The young woman who saw her world turned upside down as she learned the woman she believed to be her mother actually snatched her 18 years ago is speaking out in defense of the alleged abductor.
Kamiyah Mobley, whose name was changed to Alexis Manigo after her 1998 abduction, said she hopes her accused kidnapper, Gloria Williams, won't do hard time.
“I understand what she did was wrong but just don’t lock her up and throw away the key like everything she did was awful," Manigo told Good Morning America Wednesday.
“From that one mistake I was given the best life. I was," she added. "I had everything I ever needed wanted. I had love, especially.”
The teen, who has been thrust into the spotlight after being reunited with her biological parents over the weekend, discussed coping with the attention.
She said: “Your whole life you've been known as Alexis, Lexi and now it’s like people are referring to you as someone else nationally. This attention is very overwhelming."
The teen expressed no love for Charles Manigo, who got major national attention when he tearfully told ABC News how he always thought she was his biological daughter.
“She's still my child. That's not going to change. I will always love her,” he said.
But in a blistering Facebook post that has since been deleted, the teenager declared: "You were nothing to me my whole life. I can count on my fingers how many times I’ve spent the night at your house."
When Inside Edition producers approached him at his South Carolina home to discuss her claims, he sped away in his car.
Meanwhile, after 18 years of hoping and waiting, her biological parents have finally reunited with their child for the first time.
“I'm not saying that they weren't going to be good parents, I’m not saying that at all. It would have been a different life,” she told GMA.