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Disturbing case of child abuse uncovered in Barry County

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BARRY COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – Newschannel 3 is speaking one on one with the woman who helped police uncover a disturbing case of child abuse in Barry County.

“To think somebody could do something like that to a little girl, that’s awful, it just breaks my heart,” said Sue Hopper.

The reports are extremely troubling; a three-year-old girl beaten so badly she had to be hospitalized.

The neighbor that Newschannel 3 spoke with on Friday told us that she just had a hunch that something was very wrong.

“It was awful,” said Hopper, struggling to hold back tears.

Hopper says she feared that the parents of the her little three-year-old neighbor, a curly haired girl, had gotten involved with drugs. Hopper contacted CPS.

“I told them I thought something was going on, I said because there was always so much traffic going in and out of here,” said Hopper.

It appears that drugs were just the tip of the iceberg. According to Child Protective Services when they showed up to the house, the child’s mother, Karol Blanchard, admitted to being high on marijuana and later told investigators that her live-in boyfriend, John Munro III had been using meth for the past three days.

“It’s sad because you know that was being done around that little girl,” said Hopper. “It’s awful, I just want to cry it makes me so sad.”

According to CPS reports workers found the little girl in a “pitch black bedroom” with a “chain lock on the door,” and workers were alarmed by her injuries; “two swollen black eyes,” “a large bruise on the side of her head,” and “several bruises on her arms.”

“I wondered why the baby never came outside or anything,” said Hopper. “They seemed so angry with her all the time.”

Blanchard told investigators that she and Munro had started beating her daughter because she “had gotten up at 3:00 a.m. on Monday to use the restroom,” and that “the abuse continued for the next twelve hours,” and included “punches and slaps as well as the use of a belt.”

Blanchard said that Munro was the “primary aggressor,” but said she didn’t do anything to stop him.

Both have been charged with child abuse. Munro is being held on a million dollars bond, Blanchard’s bond was set at a half a million.

Both are due back in court next week.

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