Child abuser’s sentence slammed as ‘pathetic’

NZ Herald 17 Nov 2012
Child advocates are calling for a man who tortured his newborn daughter, biting her and breaking her bones over two months, to be jailed. Jack Alexander Booker, 22, was sentenced to 12 months’ home detention in the North Shore District Court on Thursday after pleading guilty to assaulting and injuring his baby daughter with intent this year. He started abusing her when she was just a month old, “angry and frustrated” at the newborn’s colic. Judge Nevin Dawson said he had intended sending Booker to prison but decided to sentence him to home detention after considering his remorse, willingness to be rehabilitated and lack of criminal history. Family First NZ has written to the Solicitor-General asking for the sentence to be appealed. It wrote a similar letter when James Robert Hall, 21, was sentenced to home detention after breaking his baby’s legs. The Solicitor-General said the sentence was manifestly inadequate and it was replaced with jail time.

Family First NZ spokesman Bob McCoskrie told the Weekend Herald Booker’s sentence was unacceptable. “This is another pathetic sentence that sends a dangerous message. We simply don’t value the life and protection of our vulnerable young children, based on the response of our justice system,” he said.