Three young children are fighting for their lives in Wellington Hospital's intensive care unit after they were attacked in a domestic related assault in their Naenae home yesterday.
All three children - a boy aged 8 weeks, and his sisters aged 18 months three years - have required surgery for extensive injuries. The baby has multiple abdominal, back and internal injuries; the 18th month old multiple abdominal, chest and neck injuries and the three year old multiple chest, abdominal and facial injuries.
They are this morning in a stable but serious condition.
Police were called to the Wilkie Crescent house shortly after 4pm yesterday after the children's mother, aged 26, fled the house following an argument with her partner, the children's father.
Detective Senior Sergeant Ross Levy, Lower Hutt CIB, said the distraught mother drove to a nearby fish and chip shop to seek help.
"Police officers went to the house, smashed in the front door and found a man, armed with a knife, in one of the two bedrooms," he said. "Two young girls were injured and covered in blood."
Because of the severity of the situation, officers used a Taser to overpower the man. The 30-year-old was arrested and appears today in the Lower Hutt District Court charged with assault. Further charges are pending.
The two girls were found in one bedroom and their baby brother in the lounge.
Paramedics were called to the scene, the baby was taken straight to Wellington Hospital while the girls went first to Hutt Hospital and were then transferred into Wellington.
"The house was cordoned off overnight and we've started our scene examination today," Detective Senior Sergeant Levy said.
"We're yet to speak with the mother as she's with the children at hospital. It appears however that there were arguments over the weekend, and neighbours heard shouting coming from the address."
Police are canvassing homes in the Wilkie Crescent area to see if residents can help with information about the attack.
"We've got a lot of investigative work to do, and the scene examination will take some time," Detective Senior Sergeant Levy said. "These kiddies are very young and their injuries are severe. They're extremely lucky to be alive."