Pretoria - The case of the couple accused of the attempted murder and abuse of 2-year-old Baby L has been transferred to the North Gauteng High Court.
Baby L’s mother, a 20-year-old woman from Pretoria North, and her 36-year-old partner appeared in the Pretoria North Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. They will hear their trial date on July 17.
The pair face charges of attempted murder, child abuse and failure to provide medical assistance to the toddler.
The indictment states the pair lived together as husband and wife for several months before their arrest.
Both accused had the legal duty to look after Baby L, but between November and December 30 last year, the accused “attempted to kill Baby L by repeatedly assaulting her”.
On December 27, Baby L’s mother was at work and her partner was meant to look after the toddler.
He claimed the child had fallen off a washing machine days earlier and, after she lost consciousness, she was taken to Steve Biko Academic Hospital.
“The accused were asked to wait for the neurosurgeon to review a scan as small puncture wounds were seen on the scan. Instead, the accused absconded without any treatment for the child,” the indictment reads.
The toddler was taken to Akasia Hospital on December 30 and “placed on basic life support and intubated” before being transferred to Steve Biko Hospital’s ICU. Doctors noted several injuries, bruises, a severe head injury, and injuries to her pancreas and kidneys.
The State will argue that the child’s mother was aware of the assault and failed to take steps to protect her child.
She is said to have aided and abetted the assault by continuing to leave the child in the care of her partner, hiding the child’s injuries with clothing, and fleeing the hospital on December 27. She is also accused of lying about what happened to her daughter.
The prosecution listed 10 witnesses, including Baby L’s biological father and medical experts.
Baby L’s mother was granted bail earlier this year but is not allowed access to her child.
She is planning to bring an application to be granted access to the toddler.
Her co-accused is in custody.