Women released on bond in duct tape child endangerment case

- This is the kind of case that makes concerned parents' blood boil. Estephanie Garcia and Emely Zuniga are facing serious charges, accused of using duct tape to tie the hands of a six-year-old boy behind his back and putting another strip over his eyes.

“It's definitely something that Devon Anderson and our office takes seriously and it's definitely something that we are looking into,” said Harris County Assistant District Attorney William Mejia. But there's more.

Garcia is also accused of not getting medical attention for the boy's one-year-old sister after she burned her hand in a southwest Houston apartment unit. The district attorney's office has charged both women with child endangerment but Garcia now faces an additional charge of Injury to a child because the girl's hand became infected. The women would have been able to hide what happened from the law had a maintenance worker not found the boy with his hands bound. The worker took a photograph of the boy and contacted his managers who contacted law enforcement. Laura Garcia and Maria Ruiz are also charged.

The news of the charges filed against the four women caused plenty of outrage and now some neighbors are questioning the bond amount -- just $2,000 on the duct-tape related charges.

"That's not fair," said Stanley Barhona, who lives a few doors down from the unit where the boy was found and says he never noticed anything strange going on there. "If the judge...they know what they're doing.”  

Both Zuniga and Ruiz have been released on bond but nobody answered the door when FOX 26 News stopped by. Prosecutors say this is not over yet.

“It's definitely an important situation and we want to make sure that these children are in a safe situation and get as much information as we can as the investigation does go on.”

What reason have the women given for why the boy was bound with duct tape? They say the six-year-old child had been getting into fights at school.

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