7 Sep 2009

Boy hit with metal tube for wetting bed, court told

5:45 pm on 7 September 2009

The sister of a three-year-old boy who was critically injured says her mother beat him with part of a vacuum cleaner because he wet the bed.

Itupa Julie Mikaio has admitted injuring her son Benjamin Mikaio with intent.

The Auckland woman denies charges of injuring with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and failing to provide the necessaries of life.

The three-year-old was admitted to hospital in June last year suffering head trauma, a broken pelvis, broken hands and bruising so severe it had bled into the muscles. He has yet to fully recover.

The Crown told the High Court in Auckland on Monday that Ms Mikaio threw the child head first onto the floor after he had wet the bed.

Several hours later she took him to a Samoan massage therapist, the Crown says, who told her to call 111.

In a taped interview played in court, Benjamin Mikaio's older sister says she saw her mother beat him with the metal end of a vacuum cleaner and a pair of shoes when he wet the bed.

The girl also said Ms Mikaio threw the boy head first onto the floor hard. However, under cross-examination via closed circuit television on Monday, she retracted that statement.

The accused's husband also gave evidence on Monday, saying the mother admitted beating the boy with a shoe.

Hine Mikaio told the court that while the boy was on life support the accused admitted inflicting the injuries to his body but not his head, describing her own actions as naughty.