Brussels Criminal Court: judgement for couple who left child on balcony in winter
Monday, 31 July 2017
The Brussels Criminal Court passed judgement on Monday morning on the parents who left their six-year-old boy for fifteen hours on a balcony in the cold last December. The child almost died. Moreover, the investigation showed that the boy and his twin sister were severely malnourished and abused. The mother, aged 31, and the step father, aged 21, may face up to 12 and 10 years in prison respectively.
The Public Prosecutor requested a sentence of 12 years in prison for the mother and 10 years in prison for the father-in-law, last Wednesday, before the Brussels Criminal Court. The severity of this indictment may be explained by the seriousness of the incident but also by the observation that the defendants are still refusing to take responsibility.
On December 26th, the couple called the emergency services, claiming that the little boy had had a fall. Upon arrival, paramedics had immediately spotted that the child was unconscious and had hypothermia, but also that he was malnourished and abused. Consequently his twin sister was also examined. It appeared that she was also under-nourished and abused.
Both children had then been admitted to hospital and the parents arrested for questioning. The investigation demonstrated that the children had been malnourished and abused for some months. They went for entire days without eating, and were immersed in cold showers.
On the day of the incident, the father-in-law surprised the little boy in the kitchen as he was preparing to eat a crêpe. The child had been dragged, at 5 a.m. in the morning, onto the balcony and had remained there until 8 p.m. The Public Prosecutor’s Office has stated that he might have died if he had not been treated on time.