Al­leged child abusers in court

The Mercury - - NEWS - Nosipho Mn­goma

THE 4-year-old Phoenix child, whose abuse was cap­tured on video, is still un­der­go­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal evaluation.

This was heard in the Veru­lam Mag­is­trates Court yes­ter­day as the mother and her then boyfriend ap­peared for the child’s at­tempted mur­der.

They can­not be named to pro­tect the iden­tity of the child who, after a month in hospi­tal, was re­leased into the care of a pa­ter­nal aunt.

Her abuse – al­legedly at the hands of her mother – was cap­tured on video by the boyfriend.

After the as­sault, the child was taken to hospi­tal. There, the mother al­legedly told po­lice that it was the boyfriend who had abused her.

But after the video was leaked, the mother was re­moved from the child’s bed­side and ar­rested in March.

In the video, the child is slapped and kicked.

The cou­ple was re­leased on R3 000 bail each.

Yes­ter­day, they stood on op­po­site ends of the dock, each with their own le­gal rep­re­sen­ta­tive.

Prose­cu­tor Ishara Sew­narain asked the court for a post­pone­ment as the State was await­ing a psy­chol­o­gist’s re­port. She said the child was still go­ing to ses­sions with the psy­chol­o­gist so the re­port would only be avail­able once these were fi­nalised.

Ac­cord­ing to a Fam­ily Court de­ci­sion, the cou­ple were barred from see­ing or com­mu­ni­cat­ing with the child.

Through his at­tor­ney, Kelvin Walker, the bi­o­log­i­cal fa­ther said he would be fight­ing for sole cus­tody but this could only be done once the crim­i­nal mat­ter was con­cluded.

Mean­while, a trust fund was es­tab­lished to col­lect the do­na­tions made by the public after the out­pour­ing of con­dem­na­tion at the abuse.

The cou­ple is due back in court on Au­gust 2.

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