Custodial sentences for balcony boy parents

A couple that punished a six-year-old boy by making him stand for hours on a freezing cold balcony have been given custodial sentences. The child’s mother was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment, while his stepfather has been given five year gaol.

The sentences are far more lenient than had been demanded by the Director of Public Prosecutions’ office. The child only just survived his ordeal.

On Boxing Day last year the couple made their 6-year-old son stay outside on the balcony from 5am until 8pm dressed only in his pajamas. This was his punishment for taking a pancake out of the kitchen of the family’s flat without permission.

It wasn’t until he fell unconscious that he was brought back inside. The couple told the emergency services that their son had taken a fall. The child’s condition was critical for aa time and his body temperature had fallen to just 27.2°C.

The Judge said that what had happened was a serious matter. This was made worse by the fact that the mother had failed to intervene and at no time during the investigation took responsibility for her actions.

Consequently she was given a longer sentence than the stepfather who had punished the child in the first place. The investigation also revealed that the couple’s children were often subjected to corporal punishment. They were also sometimes deprived of food and drink.