Police investigate injuries to baby

A police and Child, Youth and Family investigation is underway after a 9-month-old Rotorua baby suffered serious injuries, including head injuries.

The baby is in a serious but stable condition in Starship Hospital.

A police spokeswoman said an ambulance was called to a Korimako St house in Selwyn Heights about 6.15pm on Friday after a family member went to a neighbour for help. The baby was initially taken to Rotorua Hospital but was later flown to Auckland's Starship Hospital.

The police spokeswoman said the child was in the care of extended family at the time.

Rotorua police and Child, Youth and Family are currently investigating how the injuries happened and are liaising closely with medical experts. No arrests have been made.

Although it was yet to be determined how the child received the injuries, Rotorua mayor Kevin Winters said he was sad to hear another Rotorua child had suffered injuries.

Mr Winters started a Rotorua Safe Families campaign in the wake of the murder of Rotorua toddler Nia Glassie, who died in 2007 after months of abuse by family members, including being spun in a clothes dryer and thrown on her head during wrestling games.

Her death sparked outrage around the country and was the catalyst for the Government's White Paper on Vulnerable Children, released late last year. Mr Winters said Rotorua had been chosen to pilot the Government's child abuse programme.

"It's an issue that we have got to get to grips with as a community."

He said police and support agencies were working hard to keep children safe but it was also down to the community.

"It takes a village to raise a kid. Everybody has to be vigilant, they are the eyes and ears of the community," he said.

- By Katie Holland of The Daily Post

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