An Aberdeen man has been found guilty of child neglect after a young boy was burned by a cigarette.
Christopher Wrench was in charge of the child’s care when the youngster suffered a small, circular injury to his cheek.
The boy was later taken to hospital by someone else who spotted the mark and was concerned.
At Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital, paediatric consultant Marianne Forrester examined the boy and said the wound was consistent with an “end on” cigarette burn.
‘Sometimes you can’t account for how they hurt themselves’
Wrench denied the charge against him and was unable to offer a concrete explanation for how the injury occurred during a trial at Aberdeen Sheriff Court.
The 36-year-old suggested the injury could be a spot which the child had picked at, but that was rejected by Sheriff Mungo Bovey.
In finding him guilty, the sheriff said: “It’s not lost on me that Mr Wrench vehemently and persistently denied that he hurt the child, even accidentally.”
He went on to say he reached the conclusion that the child was injured as a result of being wilfully exposed to risk by Wrench and so found him guilty.
Defence agent John McLeod asked for sentence to be deferred for reports.
‘I assumed it was a skin problem. Not a burn’
Wrench, of Hoy Place, Aberdeen, is due to be sentenced next month.
During the trial, Wrench himself took to the witness stand and told the court: “Kids are kids. Sometimes you can’t account for how they hurt themselves.”
He accepted that he was a smoker at the time of the incident, but insisted he never smoked in the presence of children.
Asked about when he first noticed the injury, Wrench said: “I assumed it was a skin problem. Not a burn.”
He added: “I’d seen a spot on his face and I just assumed he’d picked at it and that’s what this was.”
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