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Masterton toddler hospitalised after alleged assault

Tuesday 4 Mar 2014 1:53 p.m.

By 3 News online staff

A two-year-old boy is in a drug-induced coma at Auckland's Starship Hospital following an incident at his home in Masterton.

Caleb Skinner, two, was airlifted to hospital after an alleged assault at his George St home yesterday. He has been sedated due to the amount of bleeding from his brain.

Both Caleb's mother Joanne Smith and father Daryll Skinner were at work when they learned of their son's injuries. It is understood he was in the care of someone known to the family at the time.

Police have arrested a man and he is due to appear in Masterton District Court charged with assault.

Speaking to 3 News this afternoon, Mr Skinner said Caleb was "not doing too well at the moment".

"But we have had some response out of him. The nurses asked him to touch his nose or where was his nose and he did touch his nose.

"I said that Dad was here and he tried to give me a cuddle."

"I can't believe someone has hurt my baby," Ms Smith said.

Mr Skinner says he just wants answers. While he doesn't yet know the full story, he has strong feelings about what happened.

"Anger that my child has been hurt from some unknown reason. You'd like to do things about it but you can't," he says.

"It's never okay for any child to be hurt. It's just not right. Regardless of the conditions, no child should be hurt – they should be kept safe."

Mr Skinner says his son is a fighter – he had a bowel condition that had seen him in and out of hospital for about a year, and almost claimed his life twice.

3 News

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