North Carolina

Fort Bragg soldier sexually abused adopted children for years, FBI says

New York State Police

A soldier with the U.S. Army adopted six children in 2000 and sexually abused them for years until one daughter reported the abuse in 2017, according to an indictment filed recently in a federal court in North Carolina.

Daniel Kemp and his wife Shanynn Kemp were arrested last year by New York State Police, each charged with several counts of sodomy related to the abuse in Jefferson County, New York, according to police. Daniel Kemp was based at Fort Drum in Jefferson County when he adopted the children, the FBI said in the indictment.

One of the victims told investigators “it happened so many times she was unable to quantify how many times she was abused,” according to the federal indictment filed in the Eastern District of North Carolina.

That victim told investigators the abuse began when she was 12 or 13 and the family was living in Clarksville, Tennessee, near Fort Campbell, according to the indictment. When the abuse stopped with her, Kemp began abusing another girl the FBI described as “mentally disabled,” the FBI said in the court filing.

The abuse came out in April 2017 when one of the victims, a senior at a high school near Fort Bragg in North Carolina, told school officials and the U.S. Army Criminal Investigations Command that her adopted father had been abusing her for years, according to the indictment.

She told investigators the abuse started in 2013 or 2014 when the family lived in Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

“She disclosed being physically abused by Kemp and showed her teacher photos of the physical abuse on her Nintendo DS. She also disclosed that Kemp forced her to watch pornographic videos on his computer,” FBI investigators wrote in the indictment.

But when investigators went to the family home near Fort Bragg, the other children denied knowing anything about abuse, the indictment said. Shanynn Kemp packed the children up and left the state, according to the FBI.

When North Carolina Child Protective Services called the next day, “Mrs. Kemp stated she refused to cooperate with the investigation, would not allow her children to be interviewed, and that she had left the state with her children and they were in Alabama. Mrs. Kemp stated she was outside of their ‘jurisdiction’ and nothing could be done,” according to the indictment.

Investigators found the family a couple weeks later in Arlington, Texas, the indictment said.

When police got there, the indictment said, “Victim 1 stated her mother forced her to recant what she said. Victim 1 stated everything she reported to law enforcement was true. Victim 1 said her mother told her that if she continued to tell people Kemp raped her that he would either commit suicide or go to prison which meant they would not have any healthcare or money.”

Kemp is currently in jail in Kentucky, and the U.S. Marshals will bring him to North Carolina, court records show.

Charles Duncan covers what’s happening right now across North and South Carolina, from breaking news to fun or interesting stories from across the region. He holds degrees from N.C. State University and Duke and lives two blocks from the ocean in Myrtle Beach.