Volusia County

Daytona Beach couple charged with child abuse, kidnapping, police say

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — An investigation is underway after an employee witnessed an armed woman in a car outside of a motel in Daytona Beach on Sunday morning.

When police arrived, they found Shannon Kay sitting in the driver’s seat of the vehicle, a Subaru Outback, and Derek Pearson outside of the Outback filling the car with gasoline.

Pearson told police that the car had run out of gas.

Police said that there was a toddler and another man inside the vehicle when they arrived.


According to a police report, the other man exited the Outback and waited to talk to officers.

The toddler, 22 months, was sitting in an unsecured car seat and was sitting in a diaper filled with urine and feces. The toddler is the child of Kay and Pearson, police said.

Pearson hid his ID card in the soiled diaper in order to avoid police finding out his real name, according to the police report. Pearson had warrants from Maine with extradition from Florida.

Police said the other man in the car, nicknamed Koala, told them that he was kidnapped from his RV by Pearson and Kay about 25 minutes before police arrived.

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Koala told officers that he was partying with Pearson and Kay Saturday night with another girl named Christina.

On Sunday morning, Kay and Pearson returned to the RV, armed with a firearm and taser, and kidnapped Koala accusing him of stealing $80 and Pearson’s cell phone.

According to the police report, Koala told the couple that Christina took the items and said he would help get them back.

Koala told officers that Kay told him that they were going to take him with them back to Maine and they were going to “make him suffer, kill him and burn his body along with the car to get insurance money.”

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It should be noted that police said Pearson’s father-in-law tried to report the car stolen on Saturday but the issue was determined to be civil in nature and the Outback was never reported stolen.

According to the police report, Koala planned to grab the steering wheel and crash the car but changed his mind after seeing that the toddler was unsecured in the back seat.

Police said that Koala wished to pursue criminal charges against Kay and Pearson, and he also had an open warrant out of Flagler County and was taken into custody.

Pearson and Kay were also taken into custody and transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail.

Read: Deputies investigating domestic disturbance that left one woman dead

Pearson is being charged with kidnapping, armed burglary, aggravated child abuse, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and giving false ID to police.

Kay is charged with kidnapping, armed burglary, aggravated child abuse and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

The toddler was taken into custody by the Department of Children and Families.

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