Who is Antwainese Square? Dallas woman, 39, recalls finding body of Cash Gernon, 4: 'I saw ants crawling'
Warning: Graphic content
DALLAS, TEXAS: It was supposed to be just another day for 39-year-old Antwainese Square. She was out on a routine walk early on Saturday morning, May 15, when she stumbled across the most 'traumatizing' sight ever — the dead body of a four-year-old child. What was supposed to be a regular weekend became the start of a harrowing experience. The boy was later identified as Cash Gernon, who was allegedly stabbed by an 18-year-old living in the neighborhood.
Gernon was allegedly abducted and then stabbed in the wee hours of May 15 by Darriynn Brown, who is now being held at Dallas County Jail on a $1.5M bond. For the female passerby who discovered Gernon's body, the incident was traumatizing for her, to say the least.
Who was Cash Gernon? Texas boy, 4, found dead on street, suspect Darriynn Brown's mum says he's being 'framed'
How did Cash Gernon die? 'Edged weapon' Darriynn Brown may have used to murder 4-year-old Texas boy recovered
Who is Antwainese Square?
Antwainese Square, 39, was out on a power walk in the city's Mountain Creek neighborhood at 6.45am when she discovered a body lying by the roadside but thought that it was the body of an animal. Square has daughters aged three and 12, and a 17-year-old son.
"At first I thought what I saw was a dog, but as I got closer I started noticing things, like a hand. And I just started screaming," Square, who is an educator, reportedly told DailyMail.com. For the mother-of-three, it was a period of great anxiety. "I'll never forget the ants crawling all over his little bare feet," she said. "I turned into the street and thought I saw a dog lying there. We have a lot of loose dogs around here."
"I called my mom, because the only thing I could see at first was the hair. I said, 'Mom, it's weird, it's not moving.' So I started to walk slow and the closer I got I started noticing things. I said, 'Mom, I see a hand, I think I see a body. I think I actually see a body.' And I got close, and I said, 'Mom, it's a child. It is a child.' And I just started screaming." The local reports later revealed that Gernon had been snatched from his bedroom while he was asleep alongside his twin. Brown allegedly stabbed the toddler to death with an "edged weapon", which was reportedly recovered by the police.
The 911 call
After hanging up on her mother, she called 911. Paramedics then asked her to check for any signs of life. "They asked me to walk right up to the body in case the little boy was still alive. And if he was, for me to try to save his life," she said. "I saw ants crawling all over his bare feet and he had blood over his face. He had no shoes, no socks, no shirt, none of that. He was only wearing a pair of bottoms, shorts. I just keep remembering those ants at the bottom of that baby's feet."
"He was on his back in the roadway. I remember one arm and one leg out. And the reason why I remember the arm and leg is because when I was walking up from afar, that was the determination of me knowing, OK this is a human. This is not a dog, this is a human being. And when I noticed it was a kid I just freaked out."
'No way in the world I was going to leave that baby'
At the moment, Square was so shocked that she could not fully fathom what had happened. "My initial thought was, one of these loose dogs has gotten to this baby because of the blood on his face. And then I thought, maybe somebody ran over him like a hit and run." But she stayed with Gernon till authorities arrived. "I stayed with him until the police came, there was no way in the world I was going to leave that baby on his own. In fact there was an SUV coming out of the driveway near where he was and I stopped it. Because I wanted the driver to see what had happened, I didn't want anybody running over him."
"I was like standing guard on him. I just wanted to help him, to do what I could do to help him get the peace that he needed. Even though I knew that he was dead." She went on, "I ultimately realized Cash was deceased when I saw the ants on his feet. At first it was the mouth, open. I was like, is he sleeping? Even though I saw the blood on his face you don't want to believe that this child is gone. But when I saw ants, in my mind it was like he's gone. I'll never forget that."
'I might need help'
May 15 is a day that Square can never forget. "I've thought, why him? Why couldn't I have seen this earlier? The feeling I have is why did I have to come after the fact. Why couldn't I have maybe helped him? It's traumatizing. As a mother I was particularly anguished." She can't even make it to work as she is unable to process the events. "Today I had to leave work. I had a trigger, I saw a woman walking with her son and her son looked like about the age of that little boy. I realized, you know, I might need help."