Man in court charged with assaulting a baby

A Rotorua man accused of assaulting a 9-month-old baby has made his first appearance in court.

The 21-year-old man, who has interim name suppression, appeared in the Rotorua District Court yesterday and did not enter a plea to a charge of recklessly wounding a child. A charge of assaulting a child had been with drawn and replaced with the reckless wounding of a child charge.

The case was called before Judge Chris McGuire and the accused was represented by Wiremu Te Are.

Judge McGuire consented to continued interim name suppression until his next court appearance, when the issue would again be discussed. Police did not oppose name suppression on the grounds of protecting the victim's identity.

The accused was remanded on bail until February 4, when lawyer Harry Edward would become his assigned counsel. Bail conditions included non association with two people, and not to be around children under 16 with out being supervised by an informed adult over the age of 20.

The baby was airlifted to Auckland's Starship Hospital in a serious but stable condition after an ambulance was called to a Korimako St house in Selwyn Heights on December 27. The child was in the care of extended family at the time.

The baby was discharged from hospital late last week and is now in the care of Child, Youth and Family.

Child, Youth and Family Midlands regional director Greg Versalko said said the baby boy was doing "very well given the circumstances''.

Mr Versalko said other children in the household were also in their care.

He said Child, Youth and Family had had previous involvement with the family concerned.


- Rotorua Daily Post

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