San Antonio, Texas, October 3, 2016: District Attorney Nico LaHood announced today that after further investigation, charges have been upgraded for a trio accused of tying up children in the backyard of a northeast Bexar County home and abandoning them. Porucha Phillips, age 34, Deandre Dorch, age 36, and Cheryl Reed, age 30, are now charged with the first degree offense of Injury to a Child – Serious Bodily Injury and the second degree offense of Child Abandonment.
The trio had been charged with Injury to a Child – Bodily Injury – a charge that would only allow for a sentence up to 10 years in prison. The new indictments allow the State to seek punishment up to life in prison on all three defendants. A Bexar County Grand Jury upgraded charges on the three individuals based on our continued investigation into the facts of this case.
On April 28, 2016, a resident on the 8100 block of Chipping called 911 after hearing a child cry for several hours. Bexar County Sheriff’s deputies showed up the location and looked over the fence, where they discovered two young children tied up in the backyard. The children, ages 3 and 4, were tied with a dog chain and leash. One of the children was tied up by the wrists and the other by the ankles. Deputies set both children free and they were transported to the hospital for treatment. The two children had numerous injuries. Inside the home, deputies found six children, ranging in age from 10 months old to 11 years old. All of the children were without adult supervision.
Phillips, the mother of the six children inside the home, showed up to the home with Dorch, an hour later. Reed, the mother of the two children found outside tied up, claims she was in California. She returned to San Antonio several days later. The trio were all friends who had recently moved from California. All three defendants were questioned by Bexar County Sheriff’s Office investigators. All of the children are in the care of Child Protective Services.
Injury to a Child – Serious Bodily Injury is a first degree felony, punishable by 5 to 99 years or life in prison and up to a $10,000.00 fine. Child Abandonment is a second degree felony, punishable by 2 to 20 years in prison and up to a $10,000.00 fine. Phillips, Dorch, and Reed are awaiting trial out of the 187th District Court. The District Attorney’s Office Child Abuse Unit will be prosecuting the cases against the defendants.