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Atlantic City mayor and his wife accused of abusing teenage daughter

Atlantic
City
Mayor
Marty
Small
Sr.
(D)
and
his
wife,
superintendent
of
the
city’s
public
schools,
were
accused
Monday
of
physically
and
emotionally
abusing
their
teenage
daughter.

Marty
Small,
50,
and
La’Quetta
Small,
47,
were
each
charged
with
a
second-degree
count
of
endangering
the
welfare
of
a
child,
according
to
the
Atlantic
County
Prosecutor’s
Office.
The
couple
abused
their
16-year-old
daughter
multiple
times
in
December
and
January,
including
an
instance
when
she
was
knocked
unconscious
with
a
broom,
prosecutors
said
in
a
news
release.

Marty
Small
directed
interview
requests
to
his
attorney,
Edwin
Jacobs
Jr.,
who
said
in
a
statement
to
The
Washington
Post
that
the
couple
is
“completely
innocent
of
any
wrongdoing
and
will
ultimately
be
vindicated.”
He
said
Marty
Small
will
continue
to
serve
as
mayor.

“These
complaints
focus
exclusively
on
private
family
matters,
basically
attempting
to
second
guess
parental
decisions
of
Mayor
Small
and
his
wife,”
the
statement
said.

Marty
Small
began
his
term
in
October
2019
after
his
predecessor,
Frank
Gilliam
Jr.,
resigned
following
a
guilty
plea
to
stealing
$87,000
from
a
youth
basketball
team
he
founded.
Marty
Small
was

most
recently
reelected

in
November
2021
for
a
four-year
term.

An
affidavit
filed
by
the
prosecutor’s
office
Monday
includes
transcripts
of
alleged
arguments
between
Marty
and
La’Quetta
Small
and
their
daughter
that
were
captured
on
an
iPad
video.
The
teen
was
on
a
video
call
with
her
boyfriend
on
Jan.
3
when
her
father
threatened
to
“smack
that
weave”
out
of
her
head,
the
affidavit
alleges.
When
his
daughter
asked
him
moments
later
to
stop
pushing
her,
Marty
Small
said
he
was
going
to
“slam
her
down
the
steps,”
the
affidavit
says.

“Come
past
this
line
and
I’m
gonna
grab
you
by
the
head
and
throw
you
on
the
ground!”
he
allegedly
told
her.

The
next
day,
prosecutors
say
the
daughter
wrote
in
an
Instagram
message
that
her
dad
hurt
her
because
she
didn’t
want
him
to
drive
her
to
school.

Another
video
captured
an
argument
between
La’Quetta
Small
and
her
daughter
on
Jan.
7,
when
the
girl
begged
her
mother
to
“get
off
of”
her,
the
affidavit
alleges.
La’Quetta
Small
responded
by
saying
she
could
touch
her
daughter
“whenever
I
wanna
touch
you,”
according
to
the
affidavit.

Officials
said
La’Quetta
Small
also
once
dragged
her
daughter
by
her
hair
before
striking
her
with
a
belt.
Her
daughter
suffered
bruising
on
her
legs,
chest
and
shoulders
from
her
interactions
with
her
parents,
prosecutors
say.

On
Jan.
13,
prosecutors
allege,
Marty
Small
threw
his
daughter
into
the
shower
and
choked
her
before
knocking
her
to
the
ground
with
a
broom.
She
went
to
the
hospital
three
days
later
with
a
head
injury,
the
affidavit
says,
and
allegedly
told
a
nurse
that
she
had
hit
her
head
on
a
window

an
account
Marty
Small
echoed.

The
daughter
allegedly
told
school
employees
on
Jan.
22
that
she
was
experiencing
abuse,
and
staff
asked
the
principal
to
contact
New
Jersey’s
Division
of
Child
Protection
and
Permanency,
according
to
the
affidavit.
But
the
school
never
notified
the
division,
prosecutors
said
in
a
news
release
last
month.

A
medical
facility
where
the
teen
was
participating
in
therapy
ultimately
told
the
state,
which
directed
prosecutors
to
get
involved.

On
March
28,
investigators
searched
the
Smalls’
home,
the
affidavit
says.
The
same
day,
prosecutors
accused
Atlantic
City
High
School’s
principal,
who
served
as
Marty
Small’s

campaign
manager

in
2021,
of
failing
to
report
a
child
abuse
allegation
to
the
Division
of
Child
Protection
and
Permanency.

Marty
Small
said
at
a
news
conference
April
1
that
although
prosecutors
seized
electronic
devices
from
his
home,
there
was
“no
corruption.”
He
added
that
the
investigation
was
related
to
a
“family
matter”
and
that
his
family
was
in
therapy.

“We
have
done
nothing
wrong,”
he
said
at
the
time.

The
charges
filed
against
Marty
Small
on
Monday
include
aggravated
assault,
terroristic
threats
and
simple
assault
in
addition
to
the
count
for
endangering
the
welfare
of
a
child.
La’Quetta
Small
also
faces
three
counts
of
simple
assault.

While
searching
the
family’s
house
last
month,
prosecutors
said
they
found
a
letter
in
the
daughter’s
room
that
said,
“Getting
called
dumb,
crazy,
mental
and
sick
hurts
but
that’s
okay,
I
guess
I’m
the
biggest
disappointment
for
defending
myself.”

Marty
and
La’Quetta
Small
are
scheduled
to
appear
in
court
next
month.

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