EAST ORANGE, NJ — A criminal complaint filed by the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office against Jamie Moore, the mother of a 14-year-old runaway who was missing for nearly a month, detailed horrific allegations of abuse in the East Orange household, according to two law enforcement officials familiar with the case.
Referring to the girl by her initials, the complaint said Jamies Moore endangered the teen’s welfare “specifically by stabbing the victim to her shoulder, causing a laceration that is still visible.”
The complaint continued, noting Jamie Moore also allegedly abused the teen by “spraying bleach in her eyes, pulling her braids out, striking her in the head with a frying pan, striking her with blue hangers, striking her with a broom handle.”
It also made references to the girl being hit with a Febreeze can.
The litany of alleged abuse also included a charge that the mother blocked the child’s air passages, at one point, “placing Jamie Moore’s knees on her neck and back, causing her to struggle to breathe and striking her repeatedly with hands and knees, in violation of NJSA 2C:24-4A (2).”
When PIX11 News first interviewed the mother on Oct. 27, her daughter had been missing nearly two weeks and Jamie Moore sobbed that the girl was a happy child “who wouldn’t want me to worry.”
PIX11 News reported on the teen for a new series called “The Missing,” which looks at cases that normally don’t get much attention.
Almost immediately, the FBI and New Jersey State Police got involved in the efforts to trace the teen’s whereabouts. In the last week, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, led by Theodore Stephens, took over as the lead law enforcement agency in the case.
On Thursday night, a good Samaritan in New York City noticed the teen in Harlem, near West 111th Street. The teen, who’d cut off all her braids, initially denied being who she was.
But after questioning by NYPD police officers, the girl opened up about her unhappy home life. Her mother was taking part in a search party in East Orange at the time and said she “fell to her knees” when learning her daughter was found unharmed.
Jamie Moore will turn 40 years old Monday, and she remains in the Essex County Correctional Facility on two counts of child endangerment, which include charges of physical abuse and neglect. She’s expected to face a judge soon in Criminal Court.
The 14-year-old girl and her 3-year-old brother were both removed from Moore’s custody and placed with New Jersey’s Division of Child Protection and Permanency (DCPP).