MIAMI (CBSMiami) -A South Miami-Dade lawn service owner is being held without bond on charges of molestation and sexual battery after a woman claimed the family friend molested her 7-year-old daughter while the girl was in his home. The child’s mother spoke with CBS 4’s Tiffani Helberg Saturday about the disturbing allegations.
“She’s waking up in the middle of the night now,” said the mother who didn’t want to be identified. “My daughter used to be an A student. She’s a C student now and I’m running her to the doctor to counseling not knowing what’s wrong with her and to come to find out someone’s touching her.”
A Miami-Dade judge ordered 62-year-old Julius Dupree held without bond Friday. He was charged with sexual battery on a minor by an adult, and lewd and lascivious conduct by an adult on a child under 12.
“It just drove me physically crazy. I have lost a lot of weight. I’m also stressed out by this. Emotionally, physically because this was my child. I can’t eat thinking of what she said that he did to her,” said the child’s mother.
In bond court Friday, the mother appeared to ask that Dupree be held without bond. According to her statements in court, Dupree’s fiancé operates a Florida City day care center and he is a foster parent, and she claimed in court that gives Dupree easy access to other children.
Judge Mindy Glazer denied bond pending a court appearance next Tuesday.
“Everybody in this community know that that’s a good woman and that’s a good man,” said Phyllis Horn, the sister of Dupree’s fiancée. “It’s not fair that they have to go though this foolishness for that girl.”
Horn said she believes the 7-year-old and her mother are lying about the abuse. CBS 4’s Tiffani Helberg asked Horn if authorities should be concerned about the foster children still living in Dupree’s home or the kids in his fiancee’s daycare. “No ma’am no ma’am there is no concern about no foster kids,” she said. “The children is not in danger here or at the daycare. I have been affiliated with the daycare for 10 years and there have never been any danger.”
CBS4 News called the Department of Children and Family Services to ask if it is investigating and could potentially remove the foster children from Dupree’s home. A spokeswoman said she could not obtain that information late Saturday.
Now the alleged victim’s mother said she wants other victims to come out of the shadows.
“I would like for you to come forward, not just for my daughter, but for yourself,” she said. “This is something that you do not have to hold in or be scared.”
The child’s mother, whose name is not being published to protect the child’s identity, said Dupree is a family friend who often had her daughter in his home.