A video has surfaced of American Idol finalist Syesha Mercado sobbing her heart out as law enforcement takes her newborn baby following a child protective services investigation.

In the video, Syesha, aged thirty-four, can be seen absolutely beside herself as she reluctantly hands over her baby daughter to the Manatee County Sheriff's deputies on Wednesday in Florida. Cops had insisted on the surrender of the child during a welfare check.

The footage, which is posted to Syesha's Instagram, shows the finalist begging deputies not to take her baby. She then pumps breast milk into a bottle to send off with her daughter, who was eventually taken away to the back of an SUV.


Syesha Mercado was the 3rd-place finalist on the 7th season of American Idol. She was later cast as the lead role of Deena Jones in the US national tour of Dreamgirls in 2009.

The newborn is reportedly the second child that authorities have removed from Syesha's care this year. Her toddler was placed in foster care earlier this year following a hospital visit wherein a doctor had sounded the alarm. He claimed that the young boy was malnourished.

In the video, Syesha asks law enforcement why they're taking her baby girl, "How could you guys do this? Do you not feel anything?" she asks.

"I'm human, this is my baby, my baby is days old and you're taking my baby away from me.

"You have no hearts!" She pleads. "This is so wrong. Don't make it seem like I am crazy okay! I know you have children. This is my baby. I carried my baby for 9 months. You don't care."

She accuses the social workers of "traumatizing" her baby, stating that she is healthy and happy and breastfeeding. She also claims to have all the paperwork necessary to keep the child, saying cops should have contacted her attorney, but, in the end, they took her child away.

The emotional video has gotten over 2.8 million views and has sparked outrage online, with some people accusing the authorities of racism. APNews reported about the bias and racism present in the child welfare system. Black children are taken into foster care at a disproportionately high rate and languish longer before being adopted, reunited with their parents, or aging out of the system.

Bethany Christian Services released a report detailing racial disparities in its programs for the first time. The study reviewed hundreds of cases from programs in four cities, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Detroit, and Grand Rapids, Michigan, comparing trends during the pandemic with those from 2019.

Among the findings, they discovered that black children accounted for thirty-two percent of the children of the children in Bethany's programs, compared with thirteen percent of the overall US child population.

Compared with white, multiracial, and Hispanic children, black children had the lowest rate of reunification with their biological parents at nineteen percent.