Judgement on baby Daniel trial to be handed

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Judgement has been reserved until Thursday in the baby Daniel murder trial case. Judge Joseph Matshitse on Wednesday listened to closing arguments in the case.

The state is accusing three-year-old baby Daniel’s mother and her partner of his murder.

The two are also facing charges of abuse and neglect of the child who allegedly fell into a tub of hot water in June 2016 and sustained burns to 60 percent of his body.

He also had a broken femur and arm from two previous injuries. Prosecutor Steven Rubin has argued that the caregivers failed to explain some of the bruises beyond the burn wounds.

In their closing arguments the accused pointed out inconsistencies between the testimonies of the two doctors who gave evidence. They maintain that the injuries were not due to abuse and the caregivers were not negligent as they had taken the child to hospital a few times before the latest incident.

Although the state was not satisfied with the explanations for the bruises on the child’s body, the accused said they had sufficiently explained them as baby Daniel had been accident prone and had fallen off a bike and a tree and had also hit a sliding door while chasing a cat.

The accused also maintained that the child had a high threshold for pain and as a result did not react to pain the same way as other children.

The three year-old toddler’s mother, Mary Vermaak and her partner, Timothy Naidoo, are also facing charges of abuse and neglect.


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