Parents knew baby had needles in her body, court told

Parents knew baby had needles in her body, court told

A children’s officer on Tuesday revealed that the parents of a baby who was found with 14 needles lodged in her body in December 2017, were aware about the small pieces of metal were stuck in the toddler.

Speaking at the Thika Law Courts, the children’s officer, Rebecca Kariuki said that she made the discovery after rescuing the then-10-month-old baby from her parents.

Ms. Kariuki told the court that she received the information from Isaac Gichura and Jacinta Ndunge’s oldest child after visiting the couple’s home in Kiganjo, Thika.

“The couple’s oldest child said the parents knew baby Jane Wairimu had needles lodged in her buttocks, and that the baby had developed a habit of crying uncontrollably,” said Kariuki in her testimony.

She further told the court that Mr. Gichura was married to another woman and they all lived together.

“He was living with both of the wives in his small rental house in Kiganjo,” she said. “Gichura’s second wife was not at home during our visit to their house late December, 2017.”

Isaac Gichura, 41, and Jacinta Ndunge, 31, who are facing charges of subjecting the minor to torture by inserting needles in her body, had initially told doctors at the Thika Level Five Hospital that their child was suffering from fever.

Needles were discovered lodged in the baby’s body after she was examined.

The couple maintains that they learnt about the needles in the girl’s body after her examination in hospital; and not before her admission as claimed by Ms Kariuki.

They further maintain they are unaware of how the needles got into the girl’s body.

Two witnesses had been lined up to testify on Tuesday, but only one did.

Resident Magistrate Brenda Bartoo ordered that the doctor who attended to the baby be given a chance to testify before the investigation’s officer.

The case will be heard on March 21, when the two witnesses will appear before court.