A couple from Bush Lot, West Coast Berbice have been arrested for physically abusing their nine and two-year-old Canadian sons who are now in the custody of the Child Care & Protection Agency (CCPA).
Charges are likely to be laid against the children’s father who was deported from Canada last November as well as the mother, a Canadian citizen who has West Indian roots, this newspaper understands.
They were arrested on Friday after the CCPA received reports that the older boy was badly beaten with a belt and punched in the face. There were also marks of violence about the children’s bodies.
Residents observed that the child’s eyes were swollen and black and blue. He was later seen wearing a pair of dark glasses around the yard. Turmeric was also applied to his face in an apparent attempt to reduce the swelling.
The woman and the children also came to Guyana in November and left in February. They returned in May and since then the abuse of the children started but residents were afraid to intervene.
Although the older boy would be badly beaten he would not cry but the younger child would scream loudly.
The couple is allegedly said to be using marijuana, which neighbours could smell strongly from their homes.
Residents would be willing to come forward to give evidence against the couple but said they have to be guaranteed protection. They are fearful for their lives and said they are prisoners in their own homes.
Stabroek News was told that two officers from the CCPA at Fort Wellington visited the home and told the parents about the allegations. They denied them and requested that the officers produce their identification cards.
When these were shown to them they dismissed them with crude language and continued to verbally abuse the officers with the man using expletives.
Even after a police officer joined the two female workers the couple refused to open the gate and continued the verbal abuse. The woman also ran down and placed a padlock on the gate when she saw the police officers in the van.
They were making a mockery of the officers with the man rapping about their visit. They were also using a video camera to record them. At one point the officers left the area and returned with back-up ranks and were also joined later by a senior officer who was in the area.
It was only then that the man started to calm down and around 3 pm the gate was opened and they were taken to the station.
The woman and the children spent the night at the Fort Wellington Hospital and the following morning she was taken to the station and the children were taken into protective custody.
Neighbours are fearful for their lives because the man had boasted that he “killed people in Canada already and spent a few years in jail…”
The older boy was not attending school but the mother claimed that she was teaching him at home.