Anna Leask is senior police reporter for the New Zealand Herald.

Nia Glassie's abuser has third baby taken at birth by authorities

Nia Glassie was killed in 2007 by five adults who lived at her Rotorua home. Photograph/supplied.
Nia Glassie was killed in 2007 by five adults who lived at her Rotorua home. Photograph/supplied.

One of the women jailed over the violent death of Rotorua toddler Nia Glassie has had her third child removed from her care by Child, Youth and Family at birth.

Oriwa Kemp was 19 when she was jailed for her part in the cruel and brutal death of Nia in August 2007.

She was found guilty of assaulting the 3-year-old and sentenced to three years and four months in prison.

At the time Kemp had one child.

Oriwa Kemp in court over the death of Nia Glassie. Photograph/The Daily Post, Andrew Warner.
ROT
Oriwa Kemp in court over the death of Nia Glassie. Photograph/The Daily Post, Andrew Warner. ROT

The Herald on Sunday understands that since then she has given birth three times - with CYF taking the child from her immediately on each occasion.

Her fourth child was born recently.

CYF's Auckland family regional director Sharon Thom confirmed the birth, and that the baby had been taken into care soon after.

"We can confirm that Ms Kemp has no children in her care," Thom told the Herald on Sunday.

"We can also confirm that a baby born to Ms Kemp recently has been removed and is safe and doing well with a caregiver.

"Ms Kemp is well aware of the reasons why her children are not in her care."

The decisions to remove her children have been taken in the best interests of the children and with the co-operation of the family."

Decisions around the future care of Kemp's children will be overseen by the Family Court.

Thom would not comment on the circumstances of the birth.

"It is not appropriate for us to go into any further detail regarding Ms Kemp or her children.

"Public interest is satisfied by releasing the above information which shows that Child, Youth and Family has taken the right steps to ensure Ms Kemp's children are safe and properly cared for."

Nia's death remains one of the worst child abuse cases in New Zealand history.

She died on August 3, 2007 from head injuries, 13 days after she was admitted to Starship Hospital and placed on life support.

040209aw4 Grave of murdered toddler Nia Glassie in Tokoroa. 04 February 2009 The Daily Post Picture by Andrew Warner. RDP 27Aug11 - MEMORIAL: The grave site of murdered Rotorua toddler Nia Glassi
040209aw4 Grave of murdered toddler Nia Glassie in Tokoroa. 04 February 2009 The Daily Post Picture by Andrew Warner. RDP 27Aug11 - MEMORIAL: The grave site of murdered Rotorua toddler Nia Glassi

It later emerged that the toddler had been subjected to horrific ongoing abuse that shocked the country.

Kemp was in a relationship with Nia's cousin Michael Pearson at the time, and both were initially charged with manslaughter.

A jury found them not guilty of that charge, but guilty of assaulting the little girl.

The abuse was mainly perpetrated by Wiremu Curtis, the then-partner of Nia's mother Lisa Kuka, and his brother Michael.

Most of the abuse happened while Kuka was at work.

Lisa Kuka, mother of abused toddler Nia Glassie.  Daily Post photograph by Stephen Parker
Lisa Kuka, mother of abused toddler Nia Glassie. Daily Post photograph by Stephen Parker

After the fatal attack on Nia in July 2007, believed to be repeated kicks to her head, she was left for 33 hours before medical help was sought.

When she was admitted to Starship Nia's brain damage was so severe that she could no longer breathe for herself.

A jury found the Curtis brothers guilty of Nia's murder.

Kuka was convicted of two counts of manslaughter - one for failing to provide Nia the necessaries of life and the other for failing to protect the child from violence, thereby causing her death.

In August the Herald revealed that Kuka had been recalled to prison after authorities became concerned she was a risk to the community's safety.

Kemp has not kept out of trouble since her release from prison.

In January she was convicted and discharged at the Manukau District Court for driving while forbidden.

She was also convicted and sentenced to 40 hours' community work for stealing a sweatshirt and a pair of boots from Hallensteins.

Child, Youth and Family removed 187 newborn babies from their mothers and placed them in care within 30 days of the birth in the 2015/16 year.

- Herald on Sunday

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