Father and stepmum ‘left disabled toddler to starve to death’

The Independent
The Independent

A father and stepmother have been charged with murder after the death of a four-year-old child with Downs Syndrome in Australia last year.

Willow Dunn was found dead by police in her Brisbane home on May 25 in “extremely confronting” conditions, but is believed to have died two days before.

Her father, Mark James Dunn, and stepmother, Shannon Leigh White, each face one count of murder and another of child cruelty.

At Brisbane Magistrates Court on Tuesday, it was heard the four-year-old was found with deep pressure sores - thought to be caused by prolonged time without movement - and her body appeared to have been set upon by rats.

Forensics pathologist, Dr Andrew Kedziora, told the hearing that Ms Dunn’s sores were down “to the bone”.

He said: “The fact that these pressure sores are present and they are so deep shows that for quite a while the child did not move at all.”

Dr Kedziora also found evidence of pancreatitis, most likely caused by chronic dehydration, nutritional deficiencies and an extremely low height percentile.

Dunn and White will stand trial in the Supreme Court on a date yet to be decided.

They both remain in custody.

Comments / 62

H Pruitt

WHY? WTF is wrong with people? How do you even do something like this? If there is a God above, I hope there's a nice warm spot down in Hell for "dad & stepmom"!

Nick John

if you don't want your baby after birth with life disability am sure someone out there will love them and their family people see humans not a disabled baby because they are winning out hearts

Erin Schlink

That's just so sad , give the child to the state if you don't want them , don't kill them and in such a horrible manner. In this case I believe in capital punishment


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