Editor’s note: The News Courier is withholding the name of the child victim described below to protect her from further psychological harm. To further protect her identity, the names of her mother and brother were also changed.

When stories of child predators were featured on television, Fay Miller, 28, would turn to her boyfriend and tell him she didn’t know what she’d do if anyone ever hurt her children, Don, 8, and Nell, 7.

So when a school nurse called Fay on Monday to tell her Nell reported that she’d been sexually abused, Fay was hurt, angry and afraid.

And then she learned the target of her rage: The boyfriend to whom she’d entrusted the care of her children for more than five years.

“I was sleeping with the enemy,” Fay said, her tone angry, then despairing and edged with tears as she continued: “He took her innocence.”

Nell told the school nurse the abuse began when she was 4, Fay said.

Now crying openly, she added: “He was always my best friend. He was always my babysitter.”

The man charged with the crime is Quentin Alexander Henderson, 24, of 20126 Poff Lane. Henderson is charged with two counts of first-degree rape and one count of first-degree sexual abuse, said Athens Police Capt. Marty Bruce.

Although Fay said she ended the relationship with Henderson about a year ago, she considered him her best friend. She knew him for years before they began their five-year relationship.

Her children called him “daddy,” and after their break-up, he continued to be their after-school caregiver.

“I didn’t have any money to pay for day care,” Fay said. “He was like their daddy.” Henderson worked only sporadically, she said, while she held a full-time job.

Bruce said once Nell reported the abuse to the nurse at her elementary school, the nurse called the local Department of Human Resources. Nell was then taken to Athens-Limestone Hospital to be examined.

“Henderson was brought in for questioning and admitted to raping the child,” Bruce said. Detective Dustin Lansford investigated the case.

Fay is concerned for other children Henderson babysat and wants to admonish parents not to be too trusting.

“If it looks too good to be true, it normally is,” she said. “He helped out more than their dad did.”

Now, though, she thinks of lyrics of a song by the rapper Trick Daddy that Henderson would listen to with her son and feels sick: “Trick Daddy loves the kids.”

“Nobody thought anything of letting him take their kids to the park or to go fishing,” she said.

Athens Police Lt. Floyd Johnson said investigators spoke with the parent of another child Henderson babysat, but they do not have plans to file any additional charges.

“So far, we know of one other person he kept,” Johnson said. “The mother is fairly comfortable nothing happened there.”

Johnson added that officers are working with DHR and will investigate any complaints that may come from other parents.

Fay credits the school nurse with listening to her daughter.

“Being who she is saved my daughter’s life,” she said. “She didn’t shoo her off like some people would. My daughter trusted her enough to tell. She did her job and I appreciate that so much.”

Fay’s concern now is helping her daughter cope. She plans to get counseling for Nell.

“She said, ‘Mama, I held that secret for a long time because he said he would hurt me,’” Fay said, her voice now quiet, tears dried into shiny streaks on her cheeks. “My 7-year-old was terrified.”

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