29 Jul 2010

Beaten baby dies

1:25 pm on 29 July 2010

A South Auckland baby that was admitted to Starship hospital on Friday with severe head injuries, has died.

Cezar Taylor was six months old. Police say his injuries were consistent with shaking and blunt force trauma, which were inflicted at his home in Mangere East.

The hospital says the baby died at about 7pm on Wednesday.

His mother's partner, James Allan Hemana, 30, was arrested at a house near Te Awamutu in Waikato on Wednesday morning and charged with assault of a child.

Police said later in the day that he may face further charges if the baby's condition worsened.

He has appeared in Te Awamutu District Court and is in custody until he appears again at Manukau District Court on Friday.

CYF involved

The Office of the Chief Social Worker will review Child Youth and Family's involvement in the case.

The agency confirmed on Thursday it has been involved with the baby's family.

Child Youth and Family says Cezar's mother only recently moved to Auckland, where a new social worker was assigned to work with her early this month.

Chief executive Ray Smith says the pair had met once to begin assessing the mother's situation.

He says it is extremely distressing that a baby has now died as a result of abuse.

Barnardos says the death of another baby in violent circumstances should be cause for national outrage.

Chief executive Murray Edridge says there are far too many child deaths at the hands of the people who are supposed to care for them.

He says the latest case highlights the need for more education and support for families.