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$5000 raised by community to organise pool for children allegedly assaulted in Broome

Dechlan Brennan -

The family of three Indigenous children who were allegedly cable-tied and forced to sit in the heat for over an hour have received good news, with an inflatable pool and toys being purchased and donated to them.

The "horrific" incident made international headlines when the children, aged six, seven and eight, were allegedly bound so tight they were bleeding when they were found.

45-year-old Broome resident Mat Radelic has been charged with three counts of aggravated assault. He has been accused of restraining the children after he allegedly caught them swimming in the pool of a vacant house.

The children received some good news, when a fundraiser led by Meanjin-based start-up Dreamtime Aroha, raised nearly $5000, according to a post on their Instagram.

Dreamtime Aroha posted a screenshot of an order for a $699 pool set from Big W and some inflatable toys, with the total costs including delivery amounting to $1474.

"All further donations ($4930 so far) going directly to the Jarjums (allegedly) held against their will be a 'tradie' visiting an empty residence in Broome," Dreamtime Aroha wrote on their social media.

They were also quick to make it known it wasn't their effort, stating: "Let's be clear, community did this, not us…"

The upsetting incident was live streamed at the time by the children's relative Asharahni Lilwayno, who is the recipient of the pool on the receipt.

She told The West Australian earlier this week: "I went live on Facebook and recorded the man, and we were telling the man to cut the cable ties off their wrist and just wait for the police... but he just didn't want them to let go."

A new pool and toys for the children (Image: Facebook)

The children's mother, Rowena, told A Current Affair she was emotional when she found her children tied up.

"I had tears coming down, she said. "Standing behind the fence and seeing my children like that, tied up, it was emotional. Like, what can I do?

"We just had to wait for the police. He [Mr Radelic] had no feeling or anything of my children crying, and my son…he was crying for water."

Police have been forced to rubbish claims made on social media that a video purporting to show damage to a Broome home was caused on the day the children were allegedly assaulted.

On a Broome community Facebook page, the footage was accompanied by a caption that read "those poor babies were just playing, it's a twisted world."

A flurry of comments, many of them racist in nature, followed, with many directly linking the three children to the damage.

WA Police told the ABC the damage shown in the video did not happen on Tuesday or in the days since, and the vision posted was not recent.

Mr Radelic will appear in court on March 25.


Note: Previously, all coverage of this issue in National Indigenous Times has concealed the faces of the three children pictured. Recently, family members of the children have shared other photographs of the children with news media and their faces have appeared on television news and elsewhere. As such, National Indigenous Times has concluded the family is comfortable with the children's faces being visible in reporting of the case.


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