BEXAR COUNTY, Texas – Neighbors of a North Bexar County woman who is accused of abusing two teenage boys say they are shocked and saddened by the allegations.
Marrisa Cano, 38, was arrested Sunday on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
READ THE INITIAL REPORT: Woman accused of starving 2 kids, brutally beating them with metal bat arrested
According to Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar, Cano used an aluminum baseball bat and her fists to beat the 15- and 17-year-old brothers.
Investigators said one child told them she also starved them and locked them in a garage for punishment.
“This is a tragic case,” said Salazar, after Cano’s arrest.
The case came to light Saturday after the 15-year-old made his way to a Sonic restaurant on TPC Parkway near Bulverde Road.
An arrest affidavit says he initially spoke with San Antonio police officers, but they called in deputies once they realized the boy lived outside the city limits.
At that home, in the 3600 block of Carruthers Oak, another woman answered the door Monday morning.
She told KSAT 12 News she would go back inside and get Cano’s husband to come and answer questions. However, after several minutes no one else showed up at the door.
Lindsay Anderson lives a few doors down and can’t believe the allegations.
"There was not a million times that I ever thought of that house,” she said. “They're scrawny kids but I never thought anything of abuse. That’s disgusting.”
Anderson said she was most familiar with the older boy, the 17-year-old, who she often saw working extremely hard, mowing other people’s lawns.
"He would be hustling,” Anderson said. Just because he looks so young. we're, like, 'So how old are you, and why aren't you in school? Why are you always mowing lawns?"
Still, Anderson said she never expected trouble to this extent.
She said she never noticed anything especially unusual, nor had she ever seen Cano at the home.
“It was always guys in there,” she said. “It’s a very weird dynamic. There’s a lot of people coming in and out of that house.”
Child Protective Services removed both teens from their home -- along with their 8-year-old sister -- none of whom are related to Cano.
They also took custody of two children who do belong to Cano. Salazar said those two showed no signs of abuse.
Although the teens said Cano also abused their sister, Salazar was not able to confirm that right away.
He said from the start, though, that this case is not closed and more arrests are likely.