The nice policeman let UNNAMED DAD off with a warning the first time he punched his young daughter. Then in a second incident, Daddy smacked her in the face, which resulted in a bruised lip. The daughter is now "happily" in foster care.
INVISIBLE MOTHER ALERT: All this is very interesting, because while there is one brief reference to Dad's "partner," there is no mention of a mother at all (e.g. yet another case of the Invisible Mother--very common in abusive father stories.) Maybe because there is no mother, at least in this home. So is this a single or custodial father? As usual, everything is very vague.
As for Dad, he's going to jail for 5 months, followed by one of those domestic abuse programs.
Judge slams police let-off over daughter attack
Date: 27 May 2010
A JUDGE has condemned South Yorkshire Police for letting a Doncaster dad off with a caution after he punched his young daughter.
The 31-year-old Bentley man went on to attack her again when she broke a shoe while getting ready for school.
Criticism of the police decision to caution him was made during the prosecution of the father for the second incident involving the girl, who is now eight years old and living happily with foster parents.
Doncaster's new resident judge, Jonathan Durham Hall QC, branded the original decision to caution the man "disgraceful."
Prosecutor Carl Fitch told Doncaster Crown Court the defendant's past record included the caution in August 2007 for an incident in which he smacked the girl and then punched her in the eye.
In a clear message to South Yorkshire Police about their policy on giving cautions to offenders rather than taking them to court, Judge Durham Hall said: "That's a disgrace and one of the matters I intend to resolve in this part of the county.
"That seems to be a bizarre decision."
After hearing details of the second attack on the girl the judge sentenced the father to a five-month jail term, suspended for two years, with compulsory attendance on a domestic abuse programme.
The judge said the maximum sentence for common assault, which the father admitted, was six months. But the guilty plea would entitle him to early release.
Instead Judge Hall said he would sentence him to the 'harsher and more positive' domestic abuse programme.
He ruled that if the father breached the programme the case would come back to court before him personally. He warned: "If you don't do the order I can try and put the record straight."
But the father, who cannot be named to protect the identity of his child, did not walk free. Jailing him for 21 days for the separate bail offence of not attending a previous court hearing last week, the judge said it provided "some small measure of satisfaction".
Mr Fitch had earlier told the court the girl was getting herself ready for school when she accidentally snapped the strap on a new pair of shoes.
The defendant was in bed but was woken by his partner. Mr Fitch said: "He remonstrated with the child to such an extent that he hit her with the back of his hand to her mouth.
"She was very upset by this and told a friend on the way to school and then reported the matter to the headteacher," said Mr Fitch.
Police were informed and the dad was arrested but insisted she was making the allegation up, even though she had a bruised lip.
Mr Fitch said the girl was now "flourishing" in the care of foster parents in Doncaster.
Defence counsel Andrew Smith said the child no longer wanted to see her father and he was never going to be responsible for her care in the future.
Mr Smith said the defendant was in denial about the matter because he had been abused as a child. He said: "Violence breeds more violence.
This view needs to be challenged because he is at high risk of harm to children if he can't address his behaviour.
"This offender will not want to go on the integrated domestic abuse programme because he will have his behaviour challenged, and he doesn't like that."
The judge also banned him from working with any child under 16 or living in a house with a child for the next two years.
After the case, a South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "This man was appropriately cautioned under the circumstances at that time."