Found Deceased FL - Madeline Soto, 13, Missing Child Alert, 13500 blk Town Loop Blvd, Orlando, 26 Feb 2024 *arrest*

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I do wonder about the family dynamic when the child doesn’t tell their mom about what is happening. I have three daughters and we have DRILLED into them the concepts of consent, unwanted touching and always being able to tell anything to a safe adult (ourselves and we asked each kid to name one safe non-parent). I don’t want to come across as victim-blaming, I genuinely wonder, in cases like this, why the child doesn’t go to their mom. Do they see their mom happy and not want to ruin this, is the grooming such that it “sneaks up” - or most horrible - do they say something and it’s gets ignored or brushed under the rug? I also very much appreciate those of you on this thread who have shared about their “unsafe” homes - my heart goes out to each of you. Every child deserves a safe home!

ETA - I guess I am just wondering about the dynamics of THIS family. Did Madeline have siblings, an active bio-dad, grandparents. How long was mom with this “Life-partner” (which gives me the possible ick of trying to make a boyfriend sound more serious). There is so little information to draw from.
I think some reasons could be:
* They don't truly know it's wrong, especially if they've been abused from a very young age
*Threats -of violence, making mom upset, loss of lifestyle, etc.
*Embarrassed
*Petrified of what the person will do to them if they told (absence of any spoken threat)
 

Has anyone else seen this interview with Maddie’s mother? She says “we drove her to school”, “we dropped her off”, then suddenly says “my boyfriend dropped her off”…..so now I’m confused. Was the mother with him when she was supposedly dropped off across from the church or not?? I thought not, but this is odd to say the least.
Gag!!! If it was “we” I doubt it!! How utterly frustrating. Why speak for what you don’t know? Wonder if they’d been interviewed yet? Sheriff said house was sealed up waiting on warrant, wonder if this was before or after that?
 
Gag!!! If it was “we” I doubt it!! How utterly frustrating. Why speak for what you don’t know? Wonder if they’d been interviewed yet? Sheriff said house was sealed up waiting on warrant, wonder if this was before or after that?
From the body language and the dynamics I read it as she had basically a script from him to follow.. and he was standing by to make sure she followed what he told her to say.

I think if she was interviewed off camera and alone her answer would be that she wasn’t there.
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I think some reasons could be:
* They don't truly know it's wrong, especially if they've been abused from a very young age
*Threats -of violence, making mom upset, loss of lifestyle, etc.
*Embarrassed
*Petrified of what the person will do to them if they told (absence of any spoken threat)
* Embarrassed
Absolutely this, as unfortunate as it is.
 
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So he didn’t live in the home? SW says he went o the home and picked her up? I’m confused on this point? Thank God he’s so stupid, I don’t believe Madeline sent those texts about living in the woods either. He was covering his tracks.

Also think he drove by the Church but didn’t drop her off. Did Mom know he was picking her up that day? Prearranged?
 

Has anyone else seen this interview with Maddie’s mother? She says “we drove her to school”, “we dropped her off”, then suddenly says “my boyfriend dropped her off”…..so now I’m confused. Was the mother with him when she was supposedly dropped off across from the church or not?? I thought not, but this is odd to say the least.
I was surprised by the mother's demeanor, considering what we appear to know now. Her love for this child shines through, but also it doesn't appear she even suspected her boyfriend, despite what seemed very suspicious. It will be informative to see the time stamps on the pictures he had on his phone - was this something that had happened only once very recently, or was this an ongoing abuse situation that's happened for a long time? It's so disheartening, to see how he could stand there in the background while his girlfriend was desperate for answers about her child, and not be moved.
 
Horrifying. MOO

- living in the woods sounds like an improvement
- looks like the abuse had been going on for a long time ("on or between 03/20/2022 to 12/03/2023")
- dropping MA off at church parking lot was NOT normal (per interviews with multiple others)
- odd wording "he picked up and then dropped off... " Wasn't he living there?
- Sounds like items from videos/pictures were found in home.

I repeat... Horrifying. Praying for a miracle here.

MOO
 
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So he didn’t live in the home? SW says he went o the home and picked her up? I’m confused on this point? Thank God he’s so stupid, I don’t believe Madeline sent those texts about living in the woods either. He was covering his tracks.

Also think he drove by the Church but didn’t drop her off. Did Mom know he was picking her up that day? Prearranged?
[BBM]
The affidavit also states: "The mother advised her daughter's step-father, Stephan Sterns, picked her up from home and dropped her off at Hunters Creek Middle School . . .."

It states also that the abuse took place from 20 March 2022 to 3 December 2023. I wonder if the Mom suspected something was going on? Maybe he had previously been living under the same roof, but that ended due to her suspicions? Or, it could be that that time period coincides with the dates of the photos.
 
[BBM]
The affidavit also states: "The mother advised her daughter's step-father, Stephan Sterns, picked her up from home and dropped her off at Hunters Creek Middle School . . .."

It states also that the abuse took place from 20 March 2022 to 3 December 2023. I wonder if the Mom suspected something was going on? Maybe he had previously been living under the same roof, but that ended due to her suspicions? Or, it could be that that time period coincides with the dates of the photos.
I’m hoping that if she suspected something she wouldn’t have allowed him any further contact with her……
 
For anyone who didn’t look up Florida’s Statues after reading the AW.

FSS 827.071 (5)(a). It is unlawful for any person to knowingly possess, control, or intentionally view a photograph, motion picture, exhibition, show, representation, image, data, computer depiction, or other presentation which, in whole or in part, he or she knows to include child *advertiser censored*. The possession, control, or intentional viewing of each such photograph, motion picture, exhibition, show, image, data, computer depiction, representation, or presentation is a separate offense. If such photograph, motion picture, exhibition, show, representation, image, data, computer depiction, or other presentation includes child *advertiser censored* depicting more than one child, then each such child in each such photograph, motion picture, exhibition, show, representation, image, data, computer depiction, or other presentation that is knowingly possessed, controlled, or intentionally viewed is a separate offense. A person who violates this paragraph commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
 
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