Cape foster parents arrested for sexual and physical abuse

Posted at 7:21 PM, Jul 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-20 06:21:02-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla -- A Cape Coral couple has been arrested on charges of sexual and physical abuse against their 10 foster and adopted children.

Daniel Wayne Spurgeon and Jenise Rae are both facing a total of 25 charges stemming from the abuse allegations.

Jenise ,52, is charged with 10 counts of aggravated battery on a minor. Daniel,47, faces 15 charges, including aggravated battery, lewd and lascivious behavior and sexual assault by a custodian on a minor.

Cape Coral police launched the investigation into  the living conditions at the home after speaking with three teenage girls living in the home.

Detectives responded to a disturbance call at a Cape Coral KFC where they found two 13 year-olds and a 16 year-old teen "extremely intoxicated." An arrest report states one of the 13 year old's told investigators she was given alcohol by her father, Daniel Spurgeon.

Further investigation revealed Daniel had molested at least four of his adopted daughters, ranging in age from 13 to 16.

A 19-year-old adopted daughter, whom no longer lives in the home, told investigators she had been molested by Spurgeon from the ages of 12-16.

The arrest report details strikingly different realities between the couple's 10 adopted and foster children and their two biological children that lived in the home.

The couple's 5 foster children and 5 adopted children reportedly lived off of rice, bread and beans while their biological children were fed a variety of meals throughout the day.

The couple reportedly kept two refrigerators in their home, storing her biological children's food separately from the adopted and foster children's.

The adopted and foster children also reported physical abuse. They told investigators the Spurgeon's biological children were never hit or abused in the manner they were.

Fox 4 spoke to the couple's pool maintenance person who says he never noticed anything odd about the couple.

"They seemed perfectly normal, he would come out and talk to me."

The couple's neighbors were also stunned by the arrests.

"Three doors down from where you live you have beautiful kids being abused," said Bill Meyer.

Investigators were combing through the evidence at the home of Jenise and Daniel Spurgeon Tuesday afternoon.

The police report said Daniel sexually abused at least four girls in the home as recently as Sunday, and said he forced some to watch porn and copy the acts portrayed.

"I've shared dinner with them. They've been at my house. I don't believe it. Especially any kind of sexual abuse. That blows me away. That blows me away," Tami Caraway, the family's next-door-neighbor, said.

Caraway describes the Spurgeons as her friends, and doesn't believe the police report, which says some adopted kids were forced to sleep outside.

"They have beds set up on the back patio," the family's pool boy said.

But Caraway described an alternate explanation.

"They've got a little makeshift house out there, and from what I've always known, it's just been a play house," Caraway said.

Other neighbors wondered why this abuse wasn't caught by the Department of Children and Families earlier.

Four in Your Corner's Lisa Greenberg reached out to see how often case managers checked up on the family and if they've dealt with abuse with this family in the past, but was told that information cannot be released by law.

DCF has placed the 10 children in protective custody. Officials tell Fox 4 the children will be returned to Alabama, where they are originally from.