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Monday, 27 November 2017

Father jailed for assaulting first son allowed to care for baby, judge reveals

Written by Brian Farmer

A baby whose father had been found guilty of assaulting a child suffered serious injuries months after council social workers agreed he could be cared for at home, a family court judge heard.

The man, who used "violent fantasy and gaming" to manage his emotions, had served a jail term after being convicted of breaking his first son's arm and leg when the youngster was less than two months old, Judge Sarah Lynch was told.

His second son was born some years later after he formed a relationship with another woman and social services staff agreed that the baby could be cared for by his parents under a "child protection plan".

That little boy was admitted to hospital at the age of three months, where doctors discovered he had four broken ribs, a fractured spine and torn tissue in his mouth.

Detail of the boys' cases has emerged in a written ruling by Judge Lynch after a recent private family court hearing in Leeds.

She said the first boy was placed in the care of his mother, and a family court judge had ruled that his father should have no contact with him.

A family court judge had ruled that the second boy should be adopted after concluding that one of his parents had injured him.

Judge Lynch said she had been asked to make decisions after the man fathered a daughter.

The judge said the little girl had been born earlier this year.

Social services staff had concluded that the little girl was at risk and she had gone into foster care shortly after being born.

A psychologist had told Judge Lynch that she was concerned about the man's "dependency of using violent fantasy and gaming as a means of managing his emotions" and added: "I suspect the risk of him committing future assault is high."

Judge Lynch ruled that the little girl should be placed for adoption.

"She cannot be at risk of suffering the same harm that her older brother and half-brother suffered and there is no way to avoid that," said Judge Lynch.

"I am satisfied that there is no realistic prospect of (her) being placed safely in her parents' care."

The judge added: "Her needs for stability and permanence can only be met in an adoptive placement."

She said the family could not be identified and she has not named the council involved.

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