NRL News

Teenage boy bashed newborn’s head, is given ten years in prison, eligible for release in five

by | Mar 24, 2015

By Dave Andrusko

Source: Supplied

Source: Supplied

It’d be difficult to imagine a more reprehensible, revolting act.

A teenage mother delivers a premature baby at Bunbury Regional Hospital in Australia. She steps away to heat some food and the baby’s father, himself 15 at the time, brutally bashes the baby’s head against a wall.

Judge Denis Reynolds said that neurologist Victoria Fabian described it “as the most severe brain trauma she had ever seen.”

Reporter Brendan Foster provided some of Judge Reynolds comments as he sentenced the now 16-year-old boy to ten years detention (but eligible to be released after five):

“What you did to cause the fatal injuries to your son was cowardly and extreme.

“He was only 25 days old. He was dependent and totally defenceless.

“You removed the infant from the mobile cot into room 224 and deliberately struck his head on a hard surface with considerable force on two separate occasions.

“You deliberately used considerable force on at least two separate occasions to a defenceless and totally dependent 25-day-old baby, that caused severe brain trauma that resulted in his death.”

The baby was attacked on February 15, 2014. He suffered two fractures to his skull and was airlifted to Princess Margaret Hospital. He was on life support but died February 24.

The baby had been scheduled to be discharged February 17. The room in which the baby was viciously attacked “had been set up to help him and the child’s 16-year-old mother prepare for the baby’s discharge from hospital.”

The boy pleaded guilty to the lesser offence of manslaughter, after being originally charged with murder.

The questions on everyone’s mind were why had he could have committed such a heinous act and how could he been left alone with the baby?

State prosecutor Matthew Walton said psychological reports suggested he may have been jealous of the attention the child was getting from his mother.

“That jealousy was stemming from the attention being drained away from him, to his newborn son,” Walton said, according to reporter Joanna Menagh. Walton said the boy may have felt he was “competing” with the baby for his mother’s attention.

Menagah reported that Judge Reynolds “heard the boy had a criminal record that included a conviction for throwing a knife at his girlfriend, which hit and injured an innocent bystander” and said “it was ‘surprising’ the teenager’s access to the baby was not conditional or supervised, given his upbringing that exposed him to violence and substance abuse.”

In what no doubt was an unintentional (and brutal) juxtaposition, one of the Australian newspapers covering the case ran a picture nearby of a baby gorilla. The caption read

A baby western lowland gorilla takes special infant formula milk from a bottle at Melbourne’s Zoo December 16. The baby gorilla, the subject of an Australia-wide international naming competition, is thriving 18 days after being born in a weakened condition. The gorilla, to be officially named tomorrow, will receive round-the-clock care from keepers for the next three months before a slow integration into the zoo’s nine-member gorilla group.

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Categories: Crime