30 October 2023- The parents of the victim and the alleged abuser of a six year old Waynesboro girl are facing felony charges after police determine they allowed a 41 year old relative to sleep with the victim. Milton “Eddie” Edward Simmers IV is charged with felony indecent assault of a person less than 13 and is behind bars on $150,000 bail. Krystle Dawn Sanders and Michael Antwan Sanders Speid are both charged with felony child endangerment. K. Sanders is behind bars on $25,000 bail. M. Sanders Speid is free on an unsecured bail of $25,000.
Waynesboro PD were alerted to a possible sexual assault at a residence on Cottage Street in Waynesboro on September 30th and were dispatched to investigate. Police spoke with the callers, Michael Sanders Speid and his wife Krystle Sanders. Both parents explained that K. Sanders’ cousin Milton Simmers had been staying at their home and sleeping in a bed with their six year old daughter.
Sanders Speid told investigators that he had learned of potential abuse through his daughters in a previous relationship. When Simmers was later interviewed, he reportedly denied doing anything wrong with the victim but admitted that he was sleeping in a bed with the victim.
Simmers was interviewed a few days after the initial call. During the interview, police learned that he had been staying with Sanders and Sanders Speid for about 2-3 months prior and he had slept in the same bed with the victim the entire time he lived in the home. He continued, reportedly saying that he and the victim slept in what was a futon in her bedroom. During this time, Simmers said that Sanders and Sanders Speid were aware and allowed him to sleep there.
When questioned about possible assault, Simmers allegedly detailed some incidents that he believed were “not right” and that he “knew what they were doing was wrong”, including a paddling game. When asked about touching, Simmers allegedly continued mentioned multiple times. Additionally, he detailed that he and the victim had bathed twice in the same bathtub.
According to officers, when Simmers was asked “If someone did with your daughter what you did with (the victim), do you think they should be punished?”, to which he responded “yes”. When asked how they should be punished, Simmers reportedly responded with “jail”.
The victim was interviewed by child advocates soon after, but much of it was difficult for them. The interview was suspended shortly after.
After the initial juvenile interview, police and investigators spoke to the 16 year old step-sister that the victim had told the details to. Much of it was similar, with it centered around touching and other incidents.
Sanders Speid and Sanders were interviewed last, with them reportedly showing that they knew that Simmers, who was 41, was sleeping in the same bed as their 6 year old daughter. Sanders allegedly said that “she and her husband were uncomfortable with that sleeping arrangement but allowed it to continue”. Sanders Speid allegedly told police that he knew of “questionable noise” coming from the victim in one instance, but subsequently allowed Simmers to continue living in their home and in the current living arrangements. According to the police, both parents were asked if they weighed a potential risk of letting their daughter sleep in the same bed as a 41 year old man. They both reportedly confirmed they knew the risks and still chose to let it continue.
Krystle Sanders and Eddie Simmers are behind bars on $25,000 and $150,000 bail respectively. Sanders Speid is free on an unsecured bail of $25,000.
Sources: Docket Number: MJ-39302-CR-0000439-2023, Incident No.: WPD202309511, Docket Number: MJ-39302-CR-0000437-2023, Docket Number: MJ-39302-CR-0000438-2023