A 23-year-old father pleaded guilty in court yesterday to repeatedly abusing his then 10-month-old daughter on 9 and 10 August last year. The unemployed man, whose name cannot be revealed due to a court-decreed gag order to protect the child’s identity, was convicted of one count each of ill-treating the child and causing grievous hurt.
The court heard that the man has had a history of drug use from 2007, since he was a teenager. During the time of the abuse, the man is said to have relapsed and consumed drugs daily.
His drug use led him to vent his frustrations on his wife and daughter, who was so scared of him that she would burst into tears every time she saw him.
On 9 August, the frustrated man threw a plastic bottle at his baby daughter’s face because she wouldn’t stop crying. The man left his flat after this and returned home in a bad mood, angry that he had no money to buy drugs. When he scolded his wife in his foul mood, the baby became startled and began to cry.
Upset after being unable to pacify the girl, the man shoved his baby’s head against a wall, fracturing the back of her skull. Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Sheryl Yeo added:
“The back of her head hit the wall. The victim fell to the mattress below, and was quickly carried away by (her mother).”
The court also found that the man had a habit of biting the baby. DPP Yeo revealed that according to the baby’s mother, she had noticed her husband’s habit of biting their child as far back as May 2016, when the baby was just over six months old.
The morning after the man fractured his daughter’s skill, he carried her and began biting her repeatedly over her left forearm and upper arm. He later bit her ears in the evening, as well.
The baby’s maternal grandfather was the one who lodged a police complaint over his son-in-law’s abuse of his grandchild, after he was alerted to the situation by a family member, on 13 August 2016.
When the baby was conveyed to the children’s emergency department at the National University Hospital (NUH) later that day by the police, doctors found extensive injuries over her whole body. Besides the skull fracture, doctors noted multiple bruises and cuts to her face, torso and limbs.
The baby was treated for her injuries at NUH, where she remained hospitalised until 15 Aug last year.
The man is currently incarcerated until his sentencing in one month, one 2 Nov. He is not represented by a lawyer.