Badly burnt Toko­roa tod­dler left to die in pain

South Waikato News - - Your Paper, Your Place - NI­COLA BREN­NAN-TUPARA

Tyla-ma­ree Flynn would be al­most 11 to­day if she were still alive.

She’d prob­a­bly be go­ing to school in the Hawke’s Bay where her mother, Lisa Bar­ron, now lives and is serv­ing a sen­tence of home de­ten­tion.

For what? Bar­ron de­clined to say when asked to be in­ter­viewed for this story de­spite sev­eral re­quests to speak with her more fully.

Tyla-ma­ree would be with­out a fa­ther- he died in a car crash in 2007.

But she’d also be with­out her step-fa­ther - the man re­spon­si­ble for her death ac­cord­ing to a coroner.

Rikki Hotham - Bar­ron’s part­ner at the time of Ty­la­ma­ree’s death - died in a car crash in 2008 while await­ing trial for the tod­dler’s mur­der.

In 2011 coroner Gor­don Matenga found Hotham re­spon­si­ble for the lit­tle girl’s death.

Tyla-ma­ree was badly burnt be­fore her death in Toko­roa on June 28, 2007.

The in­quest found she died after de­vel­op­ing a se­condary lung in­fec­tion and sep­ti­caemia a di­rect re­sult of the burns.

Over twenty per cent of her body - in­clud­ing her face - was cov­ered in blis­ter­ing burns.

‘‘Rikki Hotham did cause the death of Tyla-ma­ree Dar­ryl Flynn by fail­ing to seek im­me­di­ate med­i­cal at­ten­tion for her, ‘‘ Matenga said at the time.

How­ever, he stopped short of say­ing Hotham was re­spon­si­ble for in­flict­ing the burns.

Hotham had main­tained his in­no­cence through­out the po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion, say­ing Ty­la­ma­ree was burnt when her older brother turned on a hot shower at their Puriri Rd farm house.

But an au­topsy showed other­wise.

Two doc­tors - ex­perts in burns - pro­vided ev­i­dence to say Tyla-ma­ree had not been scalded by a shower, but rather had her face im­mersed in a con­tainer of hot wa­ter.

Dur­ing the in­quest Matenga heard that Tyla-ma­ree lay alone in pain through­out the night be­fore her death. She was found the next morn­ing hud­dled in a ball.

Hotham - who was en­trusted to care for her - down­played it as a mi­nor burn to her ear which only needed a cream on it. But hours later she was dead.

It took al­most 15 hours for Tyla-ma­ree to re­ceive med­i­cal help - help that doc­tors say if given ear­lier would have pre­vented her death.


Tyla-ma­ree Flynn (left), her mother Lisa Bar­ron and the Toko­roa house where the tod­dler died.

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