NZ Herald story here
Waikato Times story 30/08/2006
A 14-year-old boy forced to drink his own blood was abused by a family member appointed to care for him by Child Youth and Family. Shandi Barlow, 42, yesterday pleaded guilty to a raft of charges, including wilful ill-treatment of a child, part-way through her trial in Hamilton District Court. The court was told yesterday CYF had put the boy into Barlow's care in 2003 when he was 14. Barlow was the boy's aunt. On Monday, the jury heard Etekia Maara Araia was beaten until he bled then made to drink his blood, was dressed in women's clothes, made to strip to his underwear, hit with a bowl until it smashed, and whipped with a hose and not allowed to use the toilet.
Yesterday Barlow, from Manukau, pleaded guilty to charges of assault using weapons, injuring with intent, assault, wilful ill-treatment of a child and attempting to pervert the course of justice, when she appeared on day two of her trial before Judge Phil Connell and a jury of six men and six women. The court also heard from Barlow's former Hamilton neighbour Robyn Whanga, who was served with a trespass notice after confronting Barlow about her treatment of Etekia Araia. Ms Whanga said she saw a boy she described as "scrawny" picking food scraps off a barbecue and another time being forced to scrub a mat for about eight hours.
Every time she saw him he was wearing the same shorts and t-shirt. "I felt sorry for him," she said. "I went over to her place and asked why did he have to scrub the mat. But she (Barlow) didn't take too kindly to that. "She basically told me to mind my own business and she was swearing at me." The next day Barlow came to Ms Whanga's place and gave her the trespass notice. The jury also heard from Dr John Sheardown about various scars found on Mr Araia's body. CYF spokesperson Lee Harris-Royal said today the department did not usually comment on individual cases but would consider doing so, given the severity of this case, once it had investigated the facts. Barlow was granted bail and will be sentenced on September 18.
Date of Birth
Assault and physical abuse of a 14 year old boy in Hamilton in 2003
Sentenced to 3 years 9 months with parole eligibility after 15 months in November 2006
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