Abused nine-month-old baby declared brain-dead by doctors

SIBU: A nine-month-old boy said to have been abused by a babysitter five days ago has been declared brain-dead by two doctors at the intensive care unit of a hospital here.

Sibu OCPD Asst Comm Stanley Jonathan Ringgit said on Saturday (Jan 12) that despite two doctors coming to the same conclusion, the parents of the boy were unable to accept that he was brain dead-and insisted on keeping him on life support.

He said the victim, Aariz Harraz Zahin Azman, was declared brain-dead at 9.10am on Saturday (Jan 12).

"Two examinations made on the boy by hospital authorities were the same, which is brain death.

"However, the parents are not ready to accept it and are clinging on to hope.

"They do not want the life support machine, which the boy has been relying on, to be switched off," said ACP Stanley.

He said the parents and the hospital, however, had agreed that the machine would be switched off on Sunday (Jan 13) if the boy's heart stopped beating.

On Jan 7, the victim was rushed to the hospital's ICU in critical condition with bleeding in the brain and fractures on the left side of his skull.

His parents, who are teachers, had dropped him off with the suspect on Jan 5 before going to work.

However, they came back to the babysitter's home after receiving a call from her.

Aariz Harraz, the youngest of three children in the family, had been under the care of the babysitter since August last year.

The 39-year-old female babysitter was arrested on Tuesday (Jan 8) evening after a police report was lodged by the parents of Aariz Harraz.

She will be under remand until Jan 13.

The suspect was taking care of four children in her home in Jalan Permaijaya that had been illegally converted into a childcare centre.

The police are now investigating the case under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder instead of Section 31(1)(a) of the Child Act 2001 previously.

Another victim, a 17-month-old boy, suffered from broken upper teeth and bruises on his lips and is recovering well.