Sebastopol police arrested a woman Tuesday on suspicion of assaulting her 5-year-old daughter.
Officers responded to a report from the woman's sister around 5:45 p.m. about a possible impaired driver at state Highway 116 and Berry Lane. The caller said her sister might have struck her daughter in the face while she was under the influence of a drug at a residence before fleeing in a vehicle, police said.
The suspect returned to her Berry Lane residence with her daughter as police searched for her vehicle. Police then arrived and contacted 39-year-old Melody Eleni Loukas of Sebastopol and her daughter in Loukas' vehicle.
The girl's face was red and swollen, had dark bruises around her eyes and red marks around her neck. Loukas admitted choking her daughter until she passed out and did not give a motive for the assault, police said.
The girl was taken to the emergency room of Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital and was later transported to UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland. Police said she is expected to survive her injuries.
Loukas was arrested and booked into Sonoma County Jail under $250,000 bail on suspicion of felony battery with serious injury, assault likely to cause great bodily injury and willful injury to a child.
She is scheduled to be arraigned in Sonoma County Superior Court Thursday afternoon.