Couple guilty of neglecting baby boy

The parents of the ten-week-old baby boy are on trial at the Napier District Court.
The parents of the ten-week-old baby boy are on trial at the Napier District Court.

A jury has found a couple guilty of wilfully neglecting a 10-week-old baby boy.

The couple, who have name suppression, had been on trial this week in the Napier District Court for neglecting to seek medical treatment for the young child, who was found to have a number of fractures when he was taken to hospital in early April 2011.

The jury returned its verdict this morning following the three-day trial.

During the trial, crown prosecutor Steve Manning said the crown could not prove how the injuries were caused but the focus of the case was that no medical treatment was sought for the baby.

Mr Manning said the injuries were caused before the couple moved to Hawke's Bay in March 2011.

"The fractures were not accidental. The issues here are whether the people who had his care and custody at that time, his parents, one, knew he was suffering from the effects of these injuries and, two, deliberately neglected to do anything about those injuries.''

He said although the injuries were not accidental, the crown could not prove the circumstances they were inflicted in.

It was during a visit to a Hastings GP in April 2011 for an immunisation that the doctor noticed an issue with the baby boy's thigh.

The baby was taken to the Hawke's Bay Hospital where X-rays were taken.

A fracture to the thigh bone was found, as well as fractures to the lower legs, pelvis, toe and rib.

The couple was remanded in custody for sentencing in March.

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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