Foster parent of Mineola sex ring victim accused of abuse - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Foster parent of Mineola sex ring victim accused of abuse

Margaret Cantrell Margaret Cantrell
John Cantrell John Cantrell

Child Protective Services says a 16-year-old girl has been removed from Margaret and John Cantrell's home in Wood County.

The Cantrell's are the foster parents of the 16-year-old, as well as two other children who were involved in the so-called "Mineola Swingers" case in 2008. That case accused seven people of forcing four children to perform sexual acts at a club in Mineola. 

Six of the suspects in the case pleaded guilty in 2011 to third degree felony injury to a child. They were released from jail shortly after because they already served their required time behind bars.

The seventh defendant, Dennis Pittman, was the only suspect convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Pittman tried to appeal his case several times but was not successful. 

CPS says Margaret Cantrell called their office this week and demanded someone pick up the 16-year-old girl. They say Cantrell is refusing to accept parental responsibility of the teenager, who she has permanent managing conservatorship over.

CPS Public Information Officer Shari Pulliam says Margaret Cantrell is accused of physical and emotional abuse.

In 2008, John Cantrell was charged with two counts of a lewd act with a child under 14 for incidents that reportedly happened in 1990. Those charges were later dismissed. 

A hearing on the teenager's removal from the Cantrell home is scheduled for Tuesday morning in Wood County. 

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