One miserable article! Why on earth does the media refuse to splash this over every news outlet? This woman should never be allowed near her daughter again. She should be never allowed to have another child. Unfortunately, it’s Australia so I have no doubt she will be given her daughter back.
A Perth mother whose daughter came close to death from a sexually transmitted infection has been jailed for failing to protect the child from harm and asking her to lie about what happened.
- The child told her mother in 2016 she had been molested by her stepfather
- Her mother later let the man move back into the family home and left them alone together
- A judge sentenced the mother to five years and six months’ jail
The 34-year-old woman, who cannot be named to protect the identity of her daughter, was first told in 2016 by the then six-year-old child that she had been molested by her stepfather.
Today the District Court of WA was told the child also disclosed the abuse to other relatives who reported it to police and the man was charged.
He was granted bail with conditions he not contact the child but, after denying the allegations to the woman, she let him move back into the family’s home and he was left unsupervised with the girl.
His abuse of the girl escalated, and while the mother accepted she had a suspicion it was happening, she claimed she did not realise the extent of it until her daughter, who by then was eight years old, was taken to hospital by relatives and diagnosed with gonorrhoea.
Mum failed to get daughter medical attention, court told
The girl had complained weeks earlier of having a sore tummy and feeling sick but medical help was not sought and, by the time she was admitted to hospital, the infection was life-threatening.
Her mother has pleaded guilty to a charge of engaging in conduct knowing that it may result in a child suffering harm as a result of sexual abuse, and one count of attempting to defeat the course of justice.
The second charge related to the woman asking her daughter to recant the allegation she made in 2016 – which she did – that led to the first set of charges against the man being dropped.
Judge Fiona Vernon said it appeared that, after the first allegations were made, the woman persuaded herself that what her daughter was saying might not be true.
She described the woman’s actions in telling her daughter not to tell the truth about what happened as an abuse of her position as a mother.
“You must have known she would have been unable to resist doing what you wanted because you were her mother and she loved you and wanted to make [you] happy.
“By doing that, the child was forced to do something, knowing that it would put her beyond hope of rescue from the ongoing, very significant abuse she was then suffering.”
Judge says mother abused her position of trust
While the woman maintained she had not expressly told her daughter to tell lies, Judge Vernon said the combined influence of whatever she said had the effect of pressuring the child into telling prosecutors she was not telling the truth.
“You abused your position of trust as a mother to pursue your own interests, or what you perceived to be your own interests,” Judge Vernon said.
“It is difficult to imagine a greater betrayal of trust.”
The woman claimed her decision-making was affected by emotional and physical abuse she suffered at the hands of her partner.
Judge Vernon accepted that there was domestic abuse in the relationship, but said there was no evidence the woman would have been subjected to violence if she had taken steps to protect her child.
“Instead, you left the child alone with [her partner] … either because you were out of the house or in the house in some other room,” she said.
“You coached the child to lie about him not being there. In doing that, you allowed what appears to be your own convenience and comfort to take precedence over your child’s welfare.”
Judge Vernon sentenced the woman to five years and six months’ jail.
She will have to serve three years and six months before she will be eligible for parole and, with time already served, she will first be eligible for release in late 2024.
Her former partner pleaded guilty to six charges and was initially sentenced to nine years’ jail last year.
However, the state lodged an appeal and the term was later increased to 12 years.