SAN ANTONIO - More children are being reported to Child Protective Services in Bexar County in 2017, compared to 2016. Bexar County is also reportedly seeing higher rates of children being taken in by CPS than the Texas average.
CPS held a 'State of Our Children Summit' Tuesday.
Jessica Urias, 23, spent eight years in foster care in 15 different homes because she said her mother was abusive and an alcoholic.
"I'm not a statistic. I'm more than a statistic. I am whoever I want to be," she said.
While the number of children being reported to CPS is up from last year, regional director Erica Bamuelos said she doesn't necessarily think that's a bad thing.
"I feel like this county really does get more recording, but I think it has to do with the fact that we really try to reach out and educate people," said Bamuelos.
In the past year, Bexar County has seen some horrific cases of child abuse, including a case where two toddlers were found chained to the ground and tied to a door.
"It was something that I've never seen before in person. To me, it felt like I was watching a movie. Everything that went on that night it was almost just unbelievable," said Louis Estrada with the Bexar County Sheriff's Office.
This year, lawmakers are pushing for stiffer penalties for child abusers.
"We are seeing chronic abuse and neglect of children, elderly and the disabled. We know there's chronic abuse. There's chronic injury," said Bexar County District Attorney Nico LaHood.