Watertown firefighter, wife faced judge following child abuse c - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Watertown firefighter, wife faced judge following child abuse charges

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George and Nancie Barnes. (Watertown police photos) George and Nancie Barnes. (Watertown police photos)
WATERTOWN, CT (WFSB) -

A Watertown firefighter and his wife appeared on court on Wednesday on new child abuse charges.

Police said they arrested George and Nancie Barnes for the second time on Tuesday.

Previously, investigators said the couple was arrested in January after they learned that two of the Barnes' children were forced to stay in a bathroom for hours and sometimes months at a time.

Not only were the children isolated, they allegedly had to stand and read out loud, even eating their meals in the bathroom and only coming out to go to school or bed.

As of Tuesday, police said they faced more charges in connection with the other three children in their home.

They said two of those three children were disciplined in a similar fashion.

The said George Barnes faces an assault charge for grabbing the oldest child by the throat and pinning the child down on a couch. Nancie Barnes faces a disorderly conduct charge for pushing that child.

According to court documents, for lying, the children would get one day in the bathroom. For getting in trouble at school, it would be three days. Stealing earned them one week in the bathroom.

The couple allegedly told police they didn't think they were doing anything wrong.

"When you're going to punish children, you punish them properly. You're not mean, you're not cruel, you're not nasty to them. There is a right way and a wrong way of doing everything," said Ann Lee.

George Barnes was charged with two counts of cruelty to persons, two counts of risk of injury to a minor, two counts of second-degree unlawful restraint and third-degree assault.

Nancie Barnes was charged with two counts of cruelty to persons, two counts of risk of injury to a minor, two counts of second-degree unlawful and disorderly conduct.

The children are in the care of the Department of Children and Families, according to police. There is a protective order for all five children.

The couple is due back in court next month.

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