“WHAT kind of evil woman is this? Show yourself Mrs Clare and let my daughter speak for herself and stop hiding behind the computer to spread your lies.”
This was the response from the mother of missing 16-year-old Shindlar Cuffy to a letter sent to Newsday by someone purporting to be Pastor Clare Du Bois.
In the letter, which was emailed, “Du Bois” advised Cuffy’s mother Shondell Shallow to “legally emancipate her daughter, so she cannot be confined like that again”.
“I don't think that people realise that children are not slaves to be locked in the house only to serve the parents’ needs,” Du Bois wrote.
“This ongoing restriction of her personal life is one of the many reasons she left.”
Du Bois said while she continues to encourage Cuffy to reach out to her mother, she has refused to do so because she is afraid.
“She is now with a friend of her choice, and we stay in touch. But I can do nothing more about encouraging her, and I don't want her to go against her conscience.
“I wasn't there, but I was there when the mother blew up over Shindlar talking to me because she wasn't allowed to have any friends, and her sister tipped her mother off that she was talking with me and the mother immediately started screaming at her and telling her she would take away her phone for a month, which she did.”
Du Bois said Shallow doesn’t seem to want to apologise “for the harm she did. She drove her daughter away”.
She said her organisation is an online presence and they share teachings.
“So to say we are a cult is truly misinformation. It would make it easier for Shindlar's mother to say that because then she is totally innocent and we are the culprits.”
Shallow broke down in tears after the letter was read to her.
“What kind of sick woman is this? And she is calling herself a pastor? Which pastor plans and kidnaps a 16-year-old from her family?”
Shallow said the woman continues to tarnish her name and fabricate lies that she was abusing her daughter.
“I would never hurt my daughter, never. Why is she doing this? Mrs Clare I know Shindlar is a lovely girl. Anyone would love her, but she is not your daughter. Please send her home to us, please. This is not your daughter.”
On November 26 last year, Cuffy and her mother walked to the Southern Main Road, Claxton Bay, and she left in a Nissan AD wagon taxi to go to school. She never arrived, and that was the last time she was seen by her family.
While tidying Cuffy’s bedroom on December 24, Shallow found a handwritten letter from her daughter which said the Lord sent her on a mission and she must obey.
The Anti-Kidnapping Unit is investigating.