By Associated Press - Thursday, October 15, 2020

KING, N.C. (AP) - A North Carolina woman who worked as a part-time helper at a church preschool is charged with assault and child abuse after authorities said she repeatedly pinched three 1-year-olds.

Elizabeth Renee Mills, 19, was arrested by King police one week ago, the Winston-Salem Journal reports. Arrest warrants say Mills is charged with three counts of misdemeanor assault on a child under 12 and three counts of misdemeanor child abuse. Court records show Mills has been released from custody on her written promise to appear in court on Nov. 17.

According to warrants, Mills pinched two girls and a boy on their torsos and arms, causing bruises and sores. The warrants said the offenses occurred from Sept. 7 to Oct. 8, and the victim ranged in age from from 1 year, 8 months to 1 year, 11 months.

Mills was fired as soon as church officials learned about the allegations against her, said Sid Main, principal of Calvary Christian School. The preschool’s security-camera footage showed the children being assaulted, Main said.

King police are still investigating the matter, police Capt. Ian Tedder said.

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