McDonald's Worker May Surrender in Videotaped Beating of Young Mom

The South Jersey McDonald's worker wanted for the brutal beating of a young mother in front of her toddler and a group of bystanders is expected to turn herself in to police.

According to New Jersey State Police, the attorney for Latia Harris called them on Monday saying Harris would surrender within an hour. After a second conversation, police said they still expected her to surrender but were not sure when because the attorney did not want to hand his client over in front of the media.

Salem City police chief John Pelura III seemed less confident that her surrender was imminent, when he issued this statement:

"We are evaluating the veracity of the information spreading that Ms. Harris will turn herself in today. I have not been in contact with Ms. Harris or her attorney. We will encourage her to turn herself in and continue to ask her or her attorney to reach out to law enforcement to facilitate her surrender."

Harris, 25, has been hiding from authorities since cell phone video of last week's beating surfaced.

The assault took place on Tuesday near a McDonald's in Salem City where both Harris and the victim, 27-year-old Catherine Ferreira, worked.

The beating was videotaped by many of the onlookers, who did nothing to help Ferreira or stop the attack. The only person to try to help the victim was her 2-year-old son, who could be seen in the video yelling and kicking his mother's attacker.

"Mommy!" the boy cried as his mother was beaten just inches away.

"I think it's messed up no one came to my rescue," Ferreira said.

The nearly minute long video was posted online. It showed Harris punching, kicking and spitting on Ferreira, who admits talking about her attacker's love life, a move that she says provoked the beating.

"I'm trying to tell her, I don't want to fight you," said Ferreira.

But the attack continued, ending when the suspect threatened to kick the toddler before making one last threat to the victim.

"It's not over... you almost made me lose my job," Harris yelled at Ferreira before spitting on her and walking back to work.

The victim contacted police after the attack, which left her with a concussion, a broken nose and two black eyes.

Harris, who has eluded police since the video went public, is being charged with aggravated assault and two counts of making terroristic threats.

She is expected to turn herself into New Jersey State Police in Bellmawr Monday afternoon.


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