A pregnant woman apparently punched by a law enforcement officer while handcuffed is a decorated Air Force veteran who was involved in a dispute with a local child protective service agency over the care of her 18-month-old son and three stepchildren.
According to the Greenville (Texas) Herald Banner, Deanna Robinson, a 38-year-old resident of Quinlan, was on active duty for five years, receiving the Airman’s Medal after helping several soldiers out of a burning plane in Iraq.
Robinson is also believed to be the woman in a 37-second YouTube video who, while restrained, was punched by a deputy with the Hunt County Sheriff’s Department. The video appears to show Robinson being punched by a law enforcement officer at least once, with the officer preparing to hit her again before the video cuts off.
The video was filmed during Robinson's arrest last month, but did not begin to circulate online until this week.
According to court records, Hunt County Child Protective Services (CPS) went to a house belonging to Robinson’s parents on March 4 to take custody of her 18-month-old son. The records reveal that Robinson and her husband, Joe Llenas, Sr., were contacted by CPS on December 2014, after admitting to an incident where they put a sock in the mouth of one of Llenas’ 6-year-old sons when he threw temper tantrums.
An affidavit from CPS caseworker Erika Nelson says CPS was notified through the administration of D.C. Cannon Elementary School that the boy said he wanted to kill himself and wanted a better home, following an argument in late February of this year.
A second affidavit, filed by caseworker Jay C. Borton, confirms the previous report.
“There is concern the display of domestic violence in the presence of the children places them in an extremely dangerous situation,” the report reads in part.
CPS spokesperson Marissa Gonzalez confirmed that four children, Robinson's son and three of her stepchildren, are in temporary protective custody.
According to WFAA-TV in Dallas, Robinson was arrested following the incident captured on video on charges of resisting arrest, assault on a public servant, and interference with child custody. She was jailed for six days, being released on bond on March 9.
On Monday, Robinson told WFAA she was handcuffed in the video, and the officer hit her repeatedly.
"I’m 38 weeks pregnant, and with my stomach repeatedly pressed into that counter, and with my 18-month-old son watching his mother be assaulted, and him screaming in fear," she said.
Robinson’s infant son was born approximately two weeks after the incident and is in the care of her parents.
Rep. Dan Flynn said he is concerned with Hunt County CPS and a number of issues the agency has had to deal with over the past several years.
“CPS has had a number of issues…and we’ve discussed with them that they need a revamping of their office,” Flynn said. “They’re not addressing some of the issues we’ve talked to them about before.”
The Greenville (Texas) Herald Banner contributed to this story.