The father and stepmother of a five-year-old girl who died over the weekend due to suspected severe beating appeared at a Tuen Mun Court on Tuesday to face murder charges.
The man surnamed Chan, 26, and the woman, 27, were both charged with one count of murder after they were arrested by the police following the death of their daughter, while the step-grandmother of the girl, who was also suspected of abusing the child, was granted bail, Apple Daily reports.
Multiple old and new wounds caused by cane and other objects were found on the girl’s body when police officers visited the family’s flat at Trend Plaza in Tuen Mun Saturday afternoon, after being alerted to an incident.
Police found the girl unconscious when they made their way to the apartment, which was located in a building located along Tuen Hop Street.
She was rushed to Tuen Mun Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
According to Apple Daily, the two defendants, Chan and the woman, were said to have been classmates when they were in secondary school. They became romantically involved later when Chan was already in marriage with another woman and had two children — the girl and her elder brother, who is now aged eight.
Chan divorced his wife and married his former classmate. Since the end of last year, the girl and her brother began to suffer physical abuse and were forbidden from seeing their biological mother.
Police found their stepsister, aged seven, was also alleged to have been abused like them.
Apple Daily cited a source as saying that the stepmother, when she was working at a Tuen Mun store of a pharmacy chain, used to brag about how she beat up the children. Another source said the father had also worked in the same chain.
A video clip obtained by the newspaper shows the girl, accompanied by her stepmother, attending an activity at a kindergarten a few days before she dropped out from that school in early December.
In the clip, the girl looked scared, keeping her head down and having a mouth mask on at all times and cowering behind her stepmother.
The girl’s brother and her step-sister, who too were suspected to have suffered physical abuse from the elders, have been hospitalized since the incident came to light.
The boy, who had wounds and bruises on his body, is believed to have also suffered from malnutrition.
– Contact us at [email protected]