Child Abuse Squad detectives have arrested and charged a woman for physically assaulting three children in her care.

Last Friday (10 January 2014), police were informed that three children housed in foster care in the Lake Macquarie area were suffering from a number of physical injuries.

The children – two boys, aged 6 and 7, and a girl aged 5 – had obvious bruising on various parts of their bodies.

Police from the Child Abuse Squad’s Newcastle office immediately commenced an investigation into the report and, at 3.15am on Saturday (11 January 2014), arrested the children’s 47-year-old foster carer.

Police seized a firearm, more than 20 grams of cannabis, more than 475 grams of a white powdered substance, ammunition and other items of interest from the woman’s home before taking her to Belmont Police Station where she was charged with:

- Three counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm;

- One count of stalk/intimidate intend fear physical harm;

- One count of common assault;

- Two counts of possess prohibited drug;

- One count of possess unauthorised firearm; and,

- One count of possess ammunition without holding licence.

The woman was granted conditional bail to appear before Belmont Local Court on Monday 20 January 2014.

The children have received medical attention and are currently in the care of Family and Community Services.

The Child Abuse Squad is comprised of detectives who are specially trained to investigate crimes against children, including sexual assault, physical abuse and serious cases of neglect. The squad works in partnership with the Department of Family and Community Services and NSW Health, with specialised tri-agency teams based at metropolitan and regional locations throughout NSW.

Anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page: Reports can also be made to the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111.

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