“We weren’t able to positively impact on this young man’s life. He was too damaged.”
A 15-year-old ward of the state killed his baby son, and authorities say there’s nothing they could have done to prevent it.
The young father bashed his premature four-week-old son’s head against a door or wall in the hospital while the mother was out of the room.
The baby died from his injuries days later.
A West Australian parliamentary committee heard the teenage father had substance abuse problems and several criminal convictions including two involving violence, Perth Now reports.
Despite that, the father was allowed unrestricted access to his son.
The Director-General of the West Australian Department for Child Protection and Family Support, Emma White, told the hearing that the teen had no history of harming children.
“We had nothing to suggest those vulnerabilities would result in the tragic situation,” she said.
In the weeks before the baby’s birth, the department had trouble keeping up with the teen, who had been in state care since he was 12, because he had moved to Bunbury from Perth with the baby’s mother.
“We were running to catch up with this young man,” Ms White said.
She told the committee that the teen had completed drug and alcohol treatment, but had not started an anger management program before the incident occurred.