A Tauranga father who became enraged when his 4-year-old daughter soiled herself has admitted an assault charge.

He dragged her into the bathroom, held her under a cold shower, and repeatedly slapped her, leaving marks and bruises on her face and body.

The man pleaded guilty to a charge of assault on child when he appeared in Tauranga District Court yesterday.

The identity of the solo father, in his 30s, was suppressed on an interim basis by Judge Christopher Harding, to protect the identity of the victim.


The defendant's lawyer, Herman Roose, argued in favour of suppression to not only protect the child but also her two older siblings.

Mr Roose said it was clear police accepted this was an isolated incident rather than a pattern of behaviour.

Th court was told that last month, the Tauranga father became enraged when he found his daughter in the toilet with faeces on her hands, legs and clothing.

He dragged her by her clothing about 9m to the bathroom and forced her under a cold shower.

Fighting to hold the youngster under the cold water, he grabbed her by the back of the neck, causing her to fall several times.

During the struggle he also slapped her about seven times on her bottom, the back of her legs, her back and face while she was screaming and struggling to get free.

When asked by police how forceful the slaps were on a scale of one to 10, the defendant said 10.

His daughter's injuries included marking and bruising to her face, neck, back, bottom and upper back of her legs.


The defendant said he also told his daughter he "did not want her''.

Throughout the assault, the girl's older siblings, both aged under 8 years old, could hear what was going in.

Later that morning the defendant took his daughter into her kindergarten and told staff what he had done, saying: "I don't want to be a statistic like on TV, I don't know what to do.''

When spoken to by police about the assault, he said he was stressed and struggling to deal with his daughter who had been regularly soiling herself for four to six weeks.

The defendant said he felt like strangling his daughter at the time of the assault.

He expressed remorse and acknowledged he needed help.


Judge Harding remanded the man on bail for sentencing on January 25, 2012.