11 August 2023

Father allegedly threatened to hurt his newborn baby at Canberra Hospital

| Albert McKnight
outside view of Canberra hospital emergency department

A man in his 50s has been refused bail after allegedly threatening to injure his newborn baby at the Canberra Hospital. Photo: File.

CONTENT WARNING: This article contains distressing content.

A father accused of threatening to hurt his newborn daughter and throwing her out of a window because she had been crying apparently claims he made the alleged comments as a joke.

The man, who is unable to be named, was extradited from NSW to the ACT Magistrates Court on Thursday (10 August) and handed a charge of threatening to inflict grievous bodily harm.

His partner gave birth to their child in Canberra Hospital in September 2022, court documents say.

The morning after she had been born, she was in a private room at the hospital with her parents when she started crying, which allegedly upset her father.

He allegedly said something like, “Give her to me so I can smash her head against the wall and throw her out the window”.

His partner was allegedly scared he would carry out the threat so she immediately told hospital staff, who asked the man to leave.

READ ALSO Chainsaw-wielding man slashes officer in neck with javelin during seven-hour siege

She first made her allegations to the police a few days later but also told them she thought he may have been joking.

When the man was later asked about the issues he had been having with his partner, he allegedly said words to the effect of, “[She] couldn’t get the baby to stop crying at about 2 am and I jokingly said: ‘Here give her to me, I’ll chuck her out the window'”.

Police interviewed the partner later and she claimed she was very afraid of the man carrying out his threats and said she had told them she thought it was a joke earlier because she was worried that her daughter would be removed from her care.

The man, who is in his 50s, applied to be granted bail on Thursday (10 August), but as he had been on bail for other matters when the threat was allegedly committed, he had to prove special or exceptional circumstances existed to allow for his release.

The court heard he had successfully appealed a prison sentence in NSW and was released immediately on parole that day from Goulburn Correctional Centre before being extradited to the ACT.

READ ALSO Footage of brutal assault shows victims beaten unconscious

The man’s duty lawyer, Sam Brown, argued special or exceptional circumstances existed due to the passage of time since the alleged offence and the matters for which he was on bail at the time had been finalised.

Prosecutor Hannah Mitchell said the man was remanded in custody in NSW shortly after the alleged offence, so his extradition to the ACT on Thursday was the soonest possible time to deal with the matter.

Ultimately, Special Magistrate Rebecca Christensen was not satisfied special or exceptional circumstances existed and refused bail. The man was remanded in custody to appear in court again in September.

Daily Digest

Want the best Canberra news delivered daily? Every day we package the most popular Riotact stories and send them straight to your inbox. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.