Details emerge in toddler's death - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Details emerge in toddler's death

HUNT COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - A Hunt County couple is charged with capital murder for the death two-year-old Brandon Herrera.

Arturo Vega Jr., 23, and Gabriela Ortiz, 22, both of Campbell, are being held in the Hunt County Jail with a $2 million bond each.

By the time Gabriela Ortiz made a panicked call to 911, authorities say Brandon had been dead for hours.

Dispatcher: Hunt County 911

Ortiz: Ma'am I have an emergency.

Um, I was watching this little boy, he's been staying with me and he stopped, he stopped breathing.. his temperature got really low and he stopped breathing.

The couples' home, turned prime crime scene, is where authorities say Brandon suffered from weeks of abuse.

"We have reason to believe that it was not one specific instance that it was a combination of events of abuse," said Joe Knight, Hunt County Under Sheriff.

Authorities say Brandon had been in the care of Ortiz and Vega for at least six weeks. During that time, it's not clear if Brandon's mother had contact with her son.

"We don't have a good handle on why this child was not with the mother," said Knight.

Knight says the little boy's father is heartbroken, and wasn't aware his son was staying in this home. He says they're planning to question the family, but are waiting until they get a chance to bury Brandon.

"We've asked a lot of things and have been given a lot of answers, none of which I'm really comfortable with. Again, the why is something I suppose a lot of our community and maybe even this whole area is going to be asking for years on this one is why?" said Knight.

That answer, authorities say, may lead to more charges and possibly, more arrests.

Authorities say at this point in the investigation, there is no evidence indicating Ortiz or Vega were using drugs.

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