Crime Trackers

Mar 8, 2014 6:51 PM by Lupita Murillo

Father charged with child abuse still responsible for other children

TUCSON-Family members are making funeral arrangements for the three year old boy whose remains were found in a toy box earlier this week.

His mother Raquel Barreras is sitting in the Pima County Jail charged with first degree murder and child abuse of her son Roman. The father, Martin, also charged with child abuse.

Court documents show the children told investigators Roman had been starved to death. It's also been reported the state had severed her parental rights over the five children.

The father remains the legal guardian over the children. Even though he's in jail and possibly facing additional charges in the death of his youngest son.

"Right now the father is presumed innocent he's not guilty of any crime. His rights have not been severed." Elliot Glicksman is not involved in the case, but does represent many cases involving family of homicide victims. "As tragic as it, as long as he's the father he gets to make the call on what happens with his son's remains."

Martinez funeral home has stepped up and offered to donate its services to the family. Tomas Martinez is the owner, "I feel no one should die like that especially a 3 year old."

The funeral home has been in business for 14 years, and has held over 3,000 services. But the death of this child touched their hearts. "I wished I would have known when the baby was alive . I wished I could have taken him food and water."

So now all Martinez can do is to give little Roman a Christian burial. "We're putting away a temple of which a good soul lived in. And that's what I'm doing trying to show some compassion"

There's been an outpouring of compassion for little Roman, florists have also called to donate flowers. However, legally Martin Barreras has a say in his son's funeral. "Unless he gives up his right to be responsible for his child's remains I think right now it's still his call."

A hearing involving Child Protective Services in Juvenile Court is scheduled on Wednesday.

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