Child's hell at hand of mother
By MAGDALEN CHOW
A TODDLER was left with horrific injuries all over his body after being bitten, beaten, burned, and struck with a cane by his mother, the District Court heard yesterday.
The three-year-old spent a week fighting for his life in intensive care after suffering two months of torture and torment, a judge was told.
But this was not the first time the boy had been subjected to such abuse, the court heard.
When he was just 21/2, he was violently assaulted by a husband and wife who were employed as his babysitters, the judge was told.
His 22-year-old mother is expected to give evidence against the couple in a trial to take place at North Kowloon Court on Monday.
On that occasion the child also needed treatment in intensive care.
The mother of the victim yesterday admitted a charge of cruelty to a child.
The court ordered the press not to disclose the name of the mother or the child.
Prosecutor Milly Hung said that the boy had multiple old and new bruises as well as cane marks over his face, head, body and limbs.
His cheeks had been bitten and his arms burned, Ms Hung added.
She said that on August 4 this year, police received a report that the injured child had been found on the staircase of a building in Shantung Street, Mongkok.
The boy was sent to Kwong Wah Hospital for medical treatment and admitted to the intensive care unit, the court heard.
He stayed in the hospital until October 23.
Under caution, the mother admitted that on June 20 this year, she took her son, who was then under the care of the social services, home on leave.
But she said the boy was very naughty and so she had beaten him up on some occasions and bitten him.
On August 4, she beat him so fiercely that he became near senseless. Being at loss for what to do, she left him on the staircase.
The police said the child was under a Care and Protection Order and the supervision of a social welfare officer for 12 months after he was allegedly abused by his babysitters last year.
But he was returned to his mother after the incident because she appeared to be compentent and caring.
Jal Karbhari, defending, told the court the mother only admitted she had accidentally burned the boy with a cigarette.
He asked the court to call for further medical reports to differentiate the various stages of injuries inflicted on the child.
Deputy Judge Barnes adjourned the case until January 2 for probation, psychological and psychiatric reports.
The judge asked the prosecution to provide the court with information, such as what had happened to the child, had the child suf-fered permanent disabil-ities and the current situation.
The Social Welfare Department said yesterday a couple had applied in September to be the boy's foster parents.