ON APPEAL FROM BOURNEMOUGHT DISTRICT REGISTRY
(HIS HONOUR JUDGE BOND)
Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
LADY JUSTICE BLACK
|IN THE MATTER OF H-W (Children)|
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The Respondent Father did not appear and was not represented.
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Lady Justice Black:
"On the basis of the entire evidence submits the Local Authority the most likely explanation is that [J] suffered non-accidental injury on the afternoon on 16 March. This was inflicted by the Father in a misguided attempt to help the child by inserting his finger down the child's throat in order to remove the mucus. I accept that submission."
And in paragraph 278, page 139 in the bundle:
"My conclusions on this matter are as follows.
(i) That on the 16 March 2010 the Father in a misguided attempt to clear mucus from [J's ] throat and in a state of panic inserted his finger into the child's throat and caused an injury which resulted in bleeding on 16 March and ultimately the lobulated mass seen on 22 March"
The fracture having been dispatched in the course of the judge's findings, the throat injury was therefore the only injury which was in contention as the basis for establishing the threshold criteria in relation to either of the children. It occurred at a time when the mother was unwell, when L, the older child, was ill and the father was under considerable stress in a situation that was unusually difficult for the family.
"On considering the matter and looking at the totality of the events that afternoon and preferring the submissions of Mr Hand on this point, I have come to the conclusion that what the Father did on that occasion to a tiny baby, albeit in a state of anxiety and panic, was dangerous, disproportionate and therefore unreasonable and meets the requirements of the Threshold."
"[J] has therefore suffered significant emotional and physical harm by virtue of the injury to her throat and was therefore likely to suffer significant emotional and physical harm attributable to the care that was provided to her by her parents."
Lord Justice Ward:
Order: Application granted