Sandria acted for the Mother in a case where a child had disclosed sexual abuse by the Father. The child had initially disclosed this to the Mother some time previously, but subsequently made further disclosures, of a more serious nature.
Owing to the Father’s bail conditions, issues with alcohol and further disclosures, the Local Authority made a non-molestation application.
A decision had to be made as to the necessity of a fact finding hearing, and whether the child should be required to give evidence – something Sandria’s client objected to.
The admissions made in the Father’s police interviews meant that threshold was crossed, alleviating the necessity of a fact finding and enabling the matter could proceed to final hearing.
With Sandria’s advice and support, the Mother accepted a failure to protect. However, the Local Authority risk assessment considered that the close and strong relationship between her and the children, total separation from the Father and further mitigating circumstances made it safe for the children to be returned to the Mother’s care
Sandria sought for counselling and supportive work to be put in place for the children with immediate effect. The Court supported this, and the Local Authority agreed to investigate ways to offer support.