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NJ mom brutally beaten in front of 2-year-old son

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Jim Dolan on a brutal beating caught on tape (WABC)

A mother in Salem, N.J., was brutally beaten in front of her 2-year-old son and witnesses captured it all on video.

Now the woman is speaking out as police still search for the person responsible.

"This is cool? Oh we're videotaping a fight, they don't understand that I could have been dead right now. If she hit me in the right spot, it would have been over. McDonald's isn't worth it, a guy isn't worth it," said Catherine Ferreira.

Purple bruises surround 27-year-old Ferreira's broken nose. She is the woman who seen laying on the ground, getting violently beaten in a video that was posted online on Tuesday night.

Distressing to the victim and others, it appears that the people who were recording the video, never moved to try to stop the attack.

Police allege the assailant, seen in the video wearing the red McDonald's uniform, is 25-year-old Latia Harris.

Investigators believe Harris thought Ferreira, a one-time coworker, had spread rumors about a romantic relationship between Harris and a work supervisor - one that Harris thought could jeopardize her job.

Ferreira concedes she spoke about the pair but that it didn't justify an attack.

"It was brief conversation between me and two other girls. It's not as serious as to break anybody's nasal cavity or bone or nose period," said Ferreira.

The police chief, sadden by what he saw on the video, focused on the Ferreira's 2-year-old son, who tried stop the assailant.

"The son is the only person who has the natural instinct or is following the natural instinct to protect his mother," said Chief John Pelura III., Salem Police.

"He wasn't afraid, he just wanted to defend his mom. That's my world right there, I love that boy so much," said Ferreira.

Ferreira says she suffered a mild concussion and a broken nose during the attack.

Meanwhile, Jim Burlaga, the owner and operators of the McDonalds where Harris worked, released the following statement:

"I am aware of the incident involving one of my employees earlier this week. I am extremely disturbed by this kind of behavior and it goes against the values and standards that I expect from my employees in my restaurants. This employee will not be serving customers pending this important police investigation and I'm fully cooperating with the local police in this matter."

Harris has not shown up for work since the incident and is still at large.

Once she is taken into custody, police say she faces two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of making terroristic threats.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts is urged to contact Salem Police at 856-935-0057.
Related Topics:
new jersey newsassaultSalem
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