A woman has been arrested on suspicion that she may have caused the death of her 6-year-old grandson by strangulation in an incident that took place at a hotel in Wan Chai over the weekend.
There is speculation that the lady, who is aged 52, committed the crime as she was under extreme stress while taking care of the boy, who was said to be suffering from hyperactivity disorder.
According to reports, the grandmother took the boy, who was a primary one pupil, on a tour of Hong Kong Island on Saturday before checking into a pay-by-the-hour hotel located in a building on Lockhart Road.
She was caught by a security camera of the building holding the boy and hesitating about 10 seconds before entering the elevator at about 5 pm.
Sometime soon after midnight, the woman told hotel staff that she needed assistance as her grandson appeared to be very sick.
Police officers arrived at the scene after being alerted by hotel staff. They found the boy unconscious on the bed, with strangulation marks on his neck.
He was then rushed to Ruttonjee Hospital, where he was pronounced dead later at around 3 am, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
As the police officers noticed a detached backpack strap in the room, they suspected it was used by the woman to strangle the boy.
The grandmother was arrested and the case has been listed as murder for the time being. Forensic examinations are set be carried out to officially determine the cause of the boy’s death.
The boy allegedly suffered from hyperactivity disorder, although it was said to be not confirmed by a doctor, and the grandmother is believed to have told the police that she was too exhausted to be able to continue taking care of the child.
There was no evidence that the grandmother was mentally ill.
According to reports, the boy and his mother, a single parent who works as a nurse, were living in a flat at Yiu On Estate in Ma On Shan. As she had to work different shifts, she and her mother, the arrested woman, took turns taking care of the boy.
A spokesperson for the Social Welfare Department said the boy’s family had been a follow-up case of the department’s Integrated Family Service Centres.
In the wake of the weekend tragedy, a team of educational psychology specialists is scheduled to go to the Po Leung Kuk Riverain Primary School in Ma On Shan, which the boy attended, to provide counseling services for those in need.
An expert pointed out that parents and schools tend to think it is normal for children to be naughty but the kids, in some cases, may be suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
If such children are not given medical consultation at the right time, the parents may be missing the best moment for diagnosis and treatment, the expert said.
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