Mother At the Centre of “Worst Case of Neglect” Ever Seen Walks Free from Court 7 years ago

Mother At the Centre of “Worst Case of Neglect” Ever Seen Walks Free from Court

A 42-year-old mother of three has received a four-year suspended sentence for a case of child neglect described by one detective as the worst he’d ever seen.

Detective Garda Paul Carney told the court that he and social workers found the woman’s children on a mattress soaked in urine in a house he deemed “filthy”.


He added that the case was the worst he had seen in thirteen years on the job, and described how the children, aged two, four and eight at the time, had soiled themselves. There was no fresh food in the house when the children were found in.

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, plead guilty to willful neglect, and to a charge of assault in relation to her eldest child both in 2012.

A foster mother who took the children in at the time explained how it took four days to bathe the two-year-old as he was so distressed. He had never previously been bathed.

The four-year-old could not speak and was not toilet trained. He had never eaten solid food. The eldest child told her foster mother she had been made to watch porn by her mother.

Judge Patrick McCartan commented that the woman’s behaviour deserved imprisonment, and gave her a sentence, suspended for four years. The woman now has supervised access to her children once a week.

Her children are still with the same foster mother, were described as vastly improved by Detective Garda Carney, who said they were “almost unrecognisable today”.