LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Ala. – On Friday, Daniel Wayne Spurgeon was transported from Florida back to the Shoals to face dozens of criminal charges which include rape, sodomy, and willful abuse of a child, for abusing foster and adopted children in Florence.
With deputies by his side Monday afternoon, Spurgeon made his way from the jail elevator to the fifth-floor courtroom of Judge Gil Self. Spurgeon stood motionless in front of the judge during his arraignment.
Prior to moving to Florida in 2015, Florence police say Daniel and Jenise Spurgeon physically and sexually abused numerous children in their care.
In 2016, contact with Fort Myers police led to an investigation and charges of abuse. Their arrests there launched an investigation in Florence.
In August of 2017, a Lauderdale County grand jury indicted the Spurgeon’s.
During Monday afternoon’s hearing for Daniel Spurgeon his attorney entered not guilty and not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect to each count.
“It’s a standard plea when you're facing this number of charges and the severity of the charges. We just got involved in this case a few months ago, and we’re exploring what happened. So, we want to keep all options on the table for right now,” said defense attorney Tony Hughes.
Prosecutors say they will likely bring Daniel Spurgeon to trial first before moving on to prosecute his wife Jenise. A trial date of October 5th has been set for Daniel Spurgeon. His attorneys believe that will be continued so they can have more time to prepare their defense.
Daniel Spurgeon was being held in Florida facing prosecution until last week. That is when prosecutors in Lee County decided to let prosecutors in Lauderdale County move forward with their case.