Cri­eff cou­ple ad­mon­ished for ne­glect

Strathearn Herald - - VOICE OF THE PEOPLE - Court Reporter

A Strath cou­ple who failed to pro­vide a young baby with ad­e­quate hy­giene or care have es­caped pun­ish­ment af­ter “re­spond­ing well” to so­cial work in­put.

Deb­o­rah McNeill ( 28) and Bruce Steven­son ( 36), both of Cri­eff, also de­nied the young­ster clean cloth­ing and footwear, Perth Sher­iff Court was told.

In ad­di­tion, they omit­ted to seek med­i­cal at­ten­tion when the child needed it, ac­cord­ing to the charge.

The pair walked free from court af­ter they ad­mit­ted wil­fully ne­glect­ing the child in cir­cum­stances likely to cause un­nec­es­sary suf­fer­ing or in­jury to the young­ster’s health.

The con­tra­ven­tion of the 1937 Chil­dren and Young Per­sons’ Act took place over a two-week pe­riod - from March 16 to 30, 2016, at an ad­dress near Cri­eff.

Not guilty pleas were ac­cepted to three other charges re­lat­ing to a to­tal of three young chil­dren.

One of them had al­leged that be­tween Au­gust 2, 2015, and March 18, 2016, at an ad­dress in Cri­eff, they wil­fully ne­glected the three young­sters in a man­ner likely to cause them un­nec­es­sary suf­fer­ing or in­jury to their health.

They were ac­cused of fail­ing to en­sure the chil­dren were af­forded proper hy­giene, as well as clean, proper fit­ting cloth­ing and footwear.

The fe­male ac­cused had also been charged with fail­ing to safe­guard the well-be­ing of the youngest child at an ad­dress near Cri­eff be­tween March 14 and 30, 2016.

On that oc­ca­sion the baby was said to have been pulled by its feet across the floor by another child, caus­ing a head in­jury.

The pair also faced a fi­nal charge of wil­fully ne­glect­ing the chil­dren by fail­ing to pro­vide proper footwear and cloth­ing for them be­tween March 14 and 30 last year, again at an ad­dress near Cri­eff, re­sult­ing in an ad­verse ef­fect on their health and well-be­ing.

The pair were to have faced trial last year but a guilty plea was ac­cepted by the pros­e­cu­tion to the sin­gle charge. Sen­tence on the pair had been de­ferred.

Sher­iff Wil­liam Wood told them: “Clearly I have been fol­low­ing this mat­ter for some months and it’s been en­cour­ag­ing to note there has been no rep­e­ti­tion. This sort of lack of care is not ac­cept­able.”

He also hoped the child had ex­pe­ri­enced “no lon­glast­ing trauma.”

The sher­iff added: “You both ap­pear as first of­fend­ers. I do hope you don’t ap­pear in court on any mat­ter again.”

Both were ad­mon­ished on the sin­gle charge.

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