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Maori Child Abuse

May 15, 2016 2 comments

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Maori children are four times more likely to suffer from abuse and neglect than white children in New Zealand, but mentioning this inconvenient statistic in the media will get you branded as a racist.

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Gamer jailed for critically injuring baby.

December 19, 2014 Leave a comment
Devon Ashley Bird

Devon Ashley Bird

Waipukurau man Devon Ashley Bird, 21, appeared in Napier District Court this morning for sentencing after pleading guilty to ill-treating a child and causing grievous bodily harm with reckless disregard last month.

Full article here.

Three years for bashing and permanently injuring a 5-month-old baby.

August 27, 2013 Leave a comment

Not to worry, this tough guy will be out in a year or so and looking for another vulnerable solo mother to use and abuse, and look out any child that gets in his way

Full article here.

Imagine the pain on being punched in the stomach so hard that your organs split in two.

October 29, 2012 14 comments

James Joseph Ruhe Lawrence

For an adult, this would probably be similar to a full force kick to the abdomen from the hind leg of a horse. Imagine also being absolutely terrified and completely confused as to why it was happening to you, and utterly powerless to do anything to stop it.

You can try but I bet you can’t come close to the horrors experienced by two-year-old JJ Lawrence in the hours before his death at the fists of Joel Loffley, 29, the boyfriend of JJ’s mother Josephine Lawrence.

Justice for Serenity a little closer.

January 30, 2012 11 comments

Serenity Jay Scott-Dinnington

Police have arrested Matthew Ellery and charged him with the murder of 6-month-old Serenity Jay Scott-Dinnington. Ellery was the boyfriend of Serenity’s mother Chelsea Scott at the time of Serenity’s death in April last year. Serenity’s injuries included severe brain injuries, a broken rib cage and genital injuries.

Mum’s boyfriend charged with Serenity’s murder.

The boyfriend of a Waikato mother whose 6-month-old daughter died of non-accidental injuries last April will appear in court today charged with the infant’s murder. Waikato detectives yesterday arrested Matthew Ellery and charged him with murdering Serenity Jay Scott-Dinnington at her Ngaruawahia home.

Chelsea Scott and Matthew Ellery

Last night, Serenity’s mother, Chelsea Scott, responded to news of the arrest by changing her relationship status on Facebook from ‘in a relationship’ to ‘single’.

Good to see she’s got her priorities sorted out. 1. Get myself back on the singles market. 2. Justice for my dead child.

She also posted a message saying her “beautiful baby gurl” could rest in peace now.”Rest in peace my angel. Mummy loves u always!”

Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Greene said the accused man would appear in the Hamilton District Court. Inquiries into Serenity’s death took months as detectives pored over evidence and called in overseas forensic pathologists to assist after “areas requiring further investigation” were identified.

“To get to the point where we have sufficient evidence to bring this matter before the courts highlights the hard work and long hours put in by an investigation team who always remained focused on doing what is right for a little girl, whose life ended so tragically,” said Mr Greene.

The arrest was testament to the Ngaruawahia community, who would not tolerate violence to children and had rallied behind police, he said. “It also vindicates the very strong relationship Waikato police have with Child, Youth and Family, whose assistance in this case, from start to finish, has been invaluable.”

Serenity, who had just learned to crawl, was found lying in her room with eyes half-opened at the Havelock Rd home she shared with her mother, uncle Drew Scott and Ellery. She had severe brain injuries, a broken rib cage and genital injuries.

Two days later, on April 28, family members surrounded her at the Starship in Auckland as her life support was switched off. Last night, Ellery’s Whatawhata grandfather – who helped to raise him and told the Herald last year that his grandson was innocent – said he was in shock and could not believe what had happened.

“I probably will go along to court but we don’t know what’s happening ourselves at the moment. We are very shocked,” said Mr Ellery, who has cancer.

Cherie Kurarangi-Sweeney, a former neighbour of Ms Scott, said she was pleased to hear of the arrest. Ms Sweeney, who started Nark (Nation of Advocates for the Rights of Kids) as a result of Serenity’s death, was at her Ngaruawahia home on the day the infant was found injured.

She could hear Ms Scott arguing with her brother Drew, and lots of screaming. “We would like to congratulate Waikato police for securing the evidence to make the arrest. It’s fair to say that we have been waiting for this day for a very long time.”

On January 6, Ms Scott gave birth to a child fathered by Ellery. Child, Youth and Family took the baby less than 48 hours later. Ms Scott’s 6-year-old son, Travis, has been in CYF care since the incident last year.

Hmmm, 21 with three children, oldest being 6! “NO” is obviously not a word she is familiar with.

Ellery appeared with Ms Scott on Campbell Live last year to protest his innocence and to rebut claims that he had anger issues. He said in the interview that he had tried to do CPR on Serenity. “It was too hard and it wasn’t working. Chelsea was a mess and I was shaking.”

Might that have had something to do with you knowing you had just most likely committed murder, or was it the meth?

Ms Scott was asked if she believed that Ellery was not responsible for Serenity’s death. She said: “Yes, I believe him. People haven’t seen the way Matthew is with kids.”

Ms Scott said she knew who the baby’s killer was and pointed the finger elsewhere. On Facebook earlier, she had said the killer was walking around “as if nothing had happened” and she wanted to see justice done. “I know for a fact who killed her.”

JJ murder accused appears in court.

December 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Joel Loffley, accused murderer

Joel Loffley, 29, unemployed, of Mangere, has appeared in court charged with the murder of 2-year-old James Joseph Ruhe Lawrence, who died as a result of blunt-force trauma to his abdomen.

Man in court accused of toddler’s murder.

A man has appeared in court accused of murdering two-year-old JJ Lawrence. Joel Loffley, 29, unemployed, of Mangere, appeared before Judge Tony Fitzgerald in the Auckland District Court this morning.

He is understood to have been the boyfriend of JJ’s mother, Josephine Lawrence. He stood quietly in the dock wearing nothing but a prison-issue padded tunic.

Applications to photograph him were denied. A relative of JJ’s father, James Ruhe, who is currently in prison, said “it was only a matter of time” before an arrest was made in the case.

“I’m sure they’ll (JJ’s family) be relieved by this,” Turei Ruhe said. Police allege Loffley murdered James Joseph Ruhe Lawrence, known as JJ, at his home in suburban Orakei on November 14.

Police have said he suffered blunt-force trauma to his abdomen that caused severe damage to his internal organs. They said there were four adults and three children, including JJ, in the house when he was killed.

Police initially said accounts of what happened to JJ varied and were not consistent with autopsy results. Child Youth and Family also revealed that JJ was on its radar in the weeks before his death, but that it could not find him.

“Baby James first came to Child, Youth and Family’s notice four weeks ago,” CYF northern regional director Grant Bennett said after the child’s death.
“We consulted with other agencies, visited the home several times and were actively attempting to find mother and child. Despite this, we had been unable to speak with his mother or sight James to check on his wellbeing.”

Neither James nor his mother was previously known to the agency, he said. “We are continuing to work closely with police and support them [in] their investigation.”

Two other infants staying at the Orakei house have since been taken into Child, Youth and Family care. Loffley was remanded in custody to a further hearing on January 18.

Killer referred to dying baby as ‘zombie boy’.

November 21, 2011 5 comments

Cezar Taylor

On July 28 2010, five days after suffering a vicious assult from his mother’s boyfriend, 6-month-old Cezar Taylor died in hospital of severe brain injuries. In the days before his death, Cezar was referred to by his accused killer James Allan Hemana as ‘zombie boy’.

Baby called ‘zombie boy’ before dying.

A six month-old baby was referred to as “zombie boy” after being held upside down, violently shaken and dropped on a bed, the Crown says. James Hemana has denied murdering baby Cezar Taylor but pleaded guilty to failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Cezar was taken to Middlemore hospital with severe brain injuries and died five days later on July 28, 2010. Crown prosecutor Josh Shaw opened the Crown case this morning and told the court that Hemana’s cousin took two photographs of baby Cezar on her mobile phone, days before he was admitted to hospital.

“He was constantly vomiting, barely awake and his eyes would roll. He was referred to as ‘zombie boy’,” Mr Shaw said. He said Hemana was living with baby Cezar’s mother in Mangere and was jealous of the six-month old. He would also get angry when the baby would cry.

Mr Shaw said that on one occasion, Cezar was crying and woke Hemana, who yelled and swore at the baby. Hemana is alleged to have grabbed the baby by the front of his onesie pajamas.

“He violently punches him back and forth repeatedly before dropping him on to the bed.” Mr Shaw said Hemana also picked Cezar up by one leg and again violently shook him before dropping him on the bed.

He said Cezar’s mother, Victoria Taylor, tried to intervene. Hemana is alleged to have told her: “I don’t give a f***, b****. I’ll waste all of yous”. Mr Shaw said Ms Taylor described her son as a “very different baby” after the two incidents.

“Most of the time he was effectively lifeless and unresponsive.” He read from a statement from Ms Taylor: “Before he was alert. He would talk away, watch TV. Now he just sits there and rolls his eyes. He looked like a dog and just sat there.”

James Allan Hemana

It was about five days later that Ms Taylor took her son to hospital. Mr Shaw said she was prevented from going earlier by Hemana. He said Hemana did not go to the hospital with Ms Taylor, told her not to mention him and to say bruises on the baby’s head were caused by bumps and falls.

“In short, in anger and frustration, he gambled with Cezar’s life and ultimately took his life.”