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Mother in infant child-abuse case left heartbroken

Posted at 10:15 PM, Jan 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-04 00:51:59-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The 9-month-old baby being hit in a video we aired Thursday has been removed from his home, along with his siblings.

The baby's father, 31-year-old Marcus Reyna, was arrested and charged with injury to a child.

The baby's mother is stunned and confused, not sure of how this happened to her family.

"This is all a shock to me," she said. "It's very surprising, and it sucks because now these kids have to hurt, and now I have to hurt because I can't be with my kids because of a stupid decision he decided to make."

She said she has never seen Reyna exhibit the behavior she saw when Child Protective Services showed her the video in which he repeatedly slapped their 9-month-old baby boy's head.

"I don't know where that anger came from, because when I left him, he was fine," the baby's mother said. "He did not have any anger in him."

She said she and Reyna are currently not a couple, but he's never given her any indication their children wouldn't be safe if left alone with them.

"He never touches those kids, so I didn't see what's the problem with him being around his kids," she said. "He was just there to help me out. Visit the kids. He would always call me -- 'Can I see the kids? Can I be with them?' "

She assumes the anger Reyna expresses in the video was directed at her.

"In the video he said 'Is this what the (expletive) you want?' " she said. "It's really hurtful. I love my kids with everything I got."

The baby's mother has eight children, but only her three youngest live with her. Her other children live with her father, who has guardianship over them.

She said she was really thrilled and excited by the opportunity to see her children on Friday. They were removed from her care earlier in the week. She even brought them a surprise.

"I went and got them McDonald's," she said. "Every week, that's our thing."

Her focus now is to regain custody of her children. She said she's cooperating with investigations into the attack.

"I love my babies with everything I have, and I am cooperating and doing everything that I need to do to get my kids back," she said. " 'Cause they're my world."

Note: KRIS 6 News has chosen to not name the infant's mother in an effort to protect the child's privacy.

Digital Content Producer Ana Tamez contributed to this story.