Jury sentences man convicted in horrific case of children chained in backyard

Deandre Dorch gets 65 years in prison

SAN ANTONIO – A jury has sentenced a man found guilty for his part in a horrific child abuse case in Bexar County.

Deandre Dorch received 65 years in prison.

Last month, Dorch was convicted of two counts of injury to a child causing serious bodily injury by omission, and two counts of abandonment of a child.

During the trial in April, prosecutors said Dorch knew about the abuse suffered by two young children who were found tied and chained in his backyard.

Porucha Phillips, Dorch's common-law wife, pleaded guilty in October to charges of injury to a child and serious bodily injury to a child and is serving concurrent 50-year sentences. Both were arrested in April 2016.

Prosecutors argued that Dorch was a party to the abuse suffered by the 3-year-old girl and her 4-year-old brother because he knew about it.

The children had been left in Phillips' and Dorch's care by their mother, Cheryl Reed, while she was in California. Reed is still awaiting trial.

Prosecutors revisited the condition the children were found in during their closing arguments in April and brought out the leash and chain in which they were found.

Prosecutors said the girl was "lashed to a door with a dog leash like she's being crucified on it," while the boy was tied to the ground with a chain "like he's some sort of rabid dog."

The defense argued that Dorch didn't see the abuse because he was working night shifts from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., and suggested it was happening while Dorch was away or asleep.

Dorch denied knowledge of children tied in his backyard.

About the Author:

RJ Marquez has been at KSAT since 2010. He's covered a variety of stories and events across the San Antonio area, and is the lead reporter for KSAT Explains. He also covers the Spurs for on-air and digital platforms. You can see RJ regularly on KSAT Explains and Good Morning San Antonio. He also writes a weekly Spurs newsletter.