AN Oakey woman has been placed on probation after she used electrical cords to beat special needs children in her care.
The woman, 47, appeared in the Toowoomba Magistrates Court yesterday and pleaded guilty to two counts of assault occasioning bodily harm while armed, and two counts of common assault.
Prosecutor Sergeant Greg Lewis said a school teacher called police after a 14-year-old girl admitted she had been assaulted by the woman who cannot be named.
Officers attended the school on November 17 and the girl told them the woman “always” hit her.
She showed police two large bruises on her inner left thigh and outer right thigh.
Sgt Lewis said the girl was assaulted after school on November 16.
The woman made a loop with an electrical cord and beat the girl, yelling at her “you stupid, idiot b****”.
The defendant kept the electrical cords, from a frypan and a rice cooker, in a bread bin.
Police also interviewed other children staying at the Oakey home and discovered a seven-year-old boy had also been hit with the electrical cords.
On one occasion, he was fighting with another child about a game and on the second occasion he took $50 to school from the woman’s wallet.
Defence solicitor Ross Finlayson said the children suffered from ADHD and the woman had not had a break from caring for them in six years.
They are no longer in her care.
The court heard the woman suffered from depression.
Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist placed the woman on probation for 18 months.
“This issue of disciplining children is a topic that would divide the community,” he said.
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