DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Bystanders notified Daytona Beach police Monday morning after seeing a woman choking her 10-year-old daughter and shoving her into the ground.
Witnesses told police they saw Jamesha Whitmore, 28, holding a girl to the ground at Sunnyland Park in Daytona Beach.
Police caught up with Whitemore and the 10-year-old victim on Kingston Avenue near the park. An officer wrote in a report that the victim was "crying, visibly shaking and had dirt all over her body as if she was laying on the ground," adding that Whitmore had dirt on her knees.
After pulling the girl away, the officer learned that Whitmore had become upset while looking through her daughter's backpack for some money that she earned while in school. The girl said her mother accused her of taking money and began hitting her in the face, then pushing her to the ground and choking her with both hands.
The girl told police Whitmore threatened to killer her with a rock if she did not tell the truth. Police said the girl said she took the money only to avoid any more abuse, but Whitmore again choked her daughter with both hands.
The suspect told police she never put her hands on her daughter and that the 10-year-old has previously said she was choked by her mother and there is an open case with the Department of Children and Families about the incident.
Whitmore is charged with child abuse causing great bodily harm and felony battery by strangulation.
"Anytime you sling a 10-year-old down in the dirt and strike about her head, eyes and ears, there's a potential for great bodily harm," a Volusia County judge said during Whitmore's first appearance.
Whitmore was ordered not to have contact with her daughter and is being held on a $10,000 bail.
The girl was released to her father and Florida DCF is investigating.
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