IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. -- A Taylorsville man has been arrested and charged with sexually assaulting a child after a mother said she returned home from work to find her 7-year-old bloodied.

Deputies responded to a report of a possible sexual assault Saturday afternoon on Olin Loop Road in Olin. Upon arrival, deputies say they found a 7-year-old female victim with "obvious" injuries consistent with a sexual assault.

The mother of the 7-year-old told authorities she had left her four children at home with 28-year-old Brentley Jason Byers to go to work. She left for work Friday around 7 a.m. and returned Saturday around 1 p.m.

When she returned, the mother said she found her 7-year-old sitting in a chair in the living room with blood on her while Byers slept on the couch. Investigators said the child told her that Byers assaulted her when she was gone.

Authorities said they determined all four children were left in the care of Byers until another family member picked up two of the children around 5 p.m. Friday. The other two remained with Byers. Officials said the crime seemingly occurred during the night when the two small children and Byers were home.

The Iredell County Sheriff's Office secured a search warrant, inspected the residence and said they found evidence consistent with a sexual assault. Some of the evidence was clothing found in the washing machine which is suspected to have been an attempt to dispose of evidence, authorities said.

The 7-year-old was transported to the Brenner Children's Hospital in Winston-Salem. She suffered extensive injuries and is believed to need surgery, authorities said.

Byers was arrested and charged with statutory rape of a child by an adult. He was taken into custody and given a $1,000,000 secured bond.

Authorities say the investigation is ongoing and more charges are likely.