MIAMI, Florida (AP) — A man who had been released from prison early for good behavior was convicted Tuesday of trying to kill a young mother and leaving her 5-year-old daughter to be eaten alive by alligators in the Everglades.
Harrel Franklin Braddy had befriended Shandelle Maycock and her daughter Quatisha. Maycock testified that Braddy went to her home in November 1998 and grew enraged when she asked him to leave.
He choked Maycock until she was unconscious and then forced her and Quatisha into his car, the woman testified. At one point, Maycock gained consciousness, grabbed the child and jumped out of the moving vehicle.
Braddy stopped, choked the woman again and put her in the trunk, she testified. Maycock never saw her daughter again. Prosecutors said Braddy then drove to a section of Interstate 75 in the Everglades known as Alligator Alley and dropped Quatisha in the water beside the road.
She was alive when alligators bit her on the head and stomach, a medical examiner said.
Couey, a convicted sex offender, was staying nearby in a trailer with his half-sister. Couey kidnapped the girl from her bedroom and later, in a taped confession, admitted that he buried the child alive. “I went out there one night and dug a hole and put her in it. Buried her,” he said.
She was found wrapped in garbage bags, holding a stuffed toy dolphin, her hands bound with stereo wire. Jessica died from asphyxiation after being sexually assaulted, according to a medical examiner’s report.
Some times there are no words.