Florida mom accused of trying to sell son for $2,000

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL (BAY NEWS 9/CNN ) – Authorities in Florida have accused a mother of trying to sell her 5-year-old son for a small sum of money.

Jessica Mickles, 29, faced a judge wearing jail stripes.

Her next door neighbors said they knew it was only a matter of time, but even this charge was surprising.

“We knew there was something going on, but I never thought someone would stoop that low to sell their child,” neighbor Timothy Pillion said.

The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said Mickles tried to barter her son to a couple she met at church for $2,000.

But instead of taking the offer, James Gardner told detectives about the deal.

Within hours a sting was set up, and deputies arrested Mickles when they said she showed up in Seminole to sell her son.

Skylar Wilson, a neighbor, said the boy was always knocking on her door.

“‘I want to come over to your house. I don’t want to go to my mom’s,’” she said he said.

It may have been because of living conditions inside his home next door.

“There’s a time when they didn’t have any toilet paper. She’d come over and ask for toilet paper because he used his socks and clothes as toilet paper,” Wilson said.

Officials said the boy is unharmed and safe in child protective custody while his mother sits in jail with a $10,000 bond for trying to sell him.

Officials said the child doesn’t have any relatives in the state. They will try to figure out who should get custody of the boy.


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