In three days, three suspected child abuse cases have emerged – two in Johor and one in Selangor – and all the suspects are family members.
- Case #1: 21-month-old boy who died today, suspected abusers – adoptive parents
- Case #2: two-year-old girl who died on Sunday, suspected abusers – brother and mother
- Case #3: 12-year-old girl who ran away from home yesterday, suspected abuser – father
Case #1: 21-month-old boy
A 21-month-old boy, who was in critical condition and on life support after alleged abuse by his adoptive parents, died today at the Sultanah Nora Ismail Hospital in Batu Pahat, according to police.
Batu Pahat Police chief ACP Abdul Wahid Musa said Muhammad Al Fateh Abdullah died at 12.45 pm.
He was admitted to the children’s intensive care unit of the hospital on Sunday evening.
Abdul Wahid said a post-mortem would be conducted to determine the cause of death.
The victim was initially rushed to hospital last Wednesday by his adoptive mother after suffering fits.
“Hospital records show that it was the third time that the toddler had been treated at the hospital. (The staff) suspected that there were elements of abuse in the case when they found old and fresh wounds on the victim’s body.
“Records also show that the last time he was taken to the hospital, he was treated for suspected tuberculosis, but checks also revealed a hairline fracture on his right arm.
“He was then taken into custody by the Social Welfare Department – (but later) returned to the family.
“(Additional) checks on the victim also revealed burn marks on the palms of both hands and the sole of his right foot,” Abdul Wahid said.
The child’s adoptive parents, aged 30 and 34, were arrested at their home at 9am yesterday to assist in the investigation.
The case is being investigated under Section 31 (1)(a) of the Child Act 2001, which provides for a jail term of up to 20 years and a fine not exceeding RM5,000.
Case #2: two-year-old girl
The brother of a little girl who was found dead had admitted to punching and stepping on her when she was crying repeatedly.
The brother, a slow learner, and his mother have been remanded for seven days until Jul 16 to assist in investigations under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder, according to Segamat OCPD Supt Raub Selamat.
The victim’s mother went home to their rented room in a three-storey shophouse in Jalan Ros, Segamat, at around 1am on Sunday and discovered her lifeless body.
The woman, an unemployed single mum, then sought help from neighbours to contact the hospital.
The mother claimed to have told her 23-year-old son to look after the toddler before going to Segamat town.
“The deceased victim’s brother, a slow learner, admitted to beating his sister but it could not be determined since when,” Raub said.
He revealed that more than 15 bruises and wounds were found on the toddler’s head, chest, back and legs, adding that a post-mortem was being carried out at Malacca Hospital.
“However, a detailed investigation on the matter is still on-going despite the old bruise marks, believed to have been caused by beatings,” Raub said.
Raub added that witness statements from another tenant at the house indicated that the mother was not directly involved in the incident but police have not ruled out abuse.
He also revealed that the 42-year-old woman has a criminal record involving drugs four years ago and another record for theft in 2007.
Police said the Segamat District Islamic Affairs Office will handle the burial of the toddler as the girl had no relatives except for her mother and the elder brother, both who are in police custody.
Case #3: 12-year-old girl
A 12-year-old girl ran away from her home in Taman Puchong Prima and was spotted wandering aimlessly at a petrol station near the housing area at 12.30 am on Jul 10 by a stranger.
The girl later told police she was frequently caned by her father over trivial matters, according to Subang Jaya police chief Assistant Commissioner Mohammad Azlin Sadari.
“As she had injuries on her head, arms, thighs and legs, we decided to take her to Serdang Hospital for further examinations.
“It was learnt that the girl’s mother had also left the house hours after her, following an argument with the girl’s father.” Azlin said.
He said the case is being investigated under Section 31(a) of the Child Act 2001 for negligence and police are looking for the girl’s father.