No bid for bail: Accused father cannot be identified under NSW law

A North Albury man has angrily denied he contaminated his baby daughter’s dummy with the drug “ice”, leaving her seriously ill.

The then four-month-old girl was admitted to Albury hospital in late October with a mystery illness.

It was not until pathology tests were completed that it was found the baby had both amphetamine and methamphetamine in her system.

The man made a brief appearance in the dock of Albury Local Court on Thursday morning.

While he did not enter a plea, he did comment from the dock: “I just don’t understand this whole f … ing shit really.”

A bail justice had just asked the 24-year-old if he understood that no application for bail had been made by his duty solicitor, Graham Lamond.

He had to be asked again, at which point he attacked the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions over his charging.

“It’s a f … ing joke, I’m telling you.”

The man’s partner, the mother of his daughter, sat quietly in the public gallery while his case was heard.

The man made no attempt to look at her, then as he was being led to the court cells he put his fingers to his mouth to kiss in her direction.

She returned the gesture, then left the court a couple of minutes later.

The man cannot be identified, because in so doing it would identify the victim. He was arrested on Wednesday about 9am after a short chase on foot, then taken to Albury police station.

Police charged the man with use poison so as to endanger life or inflict grievous harm.

The charge suggests that he allegedly administered “ice” to the girl by contaminating her dummy.

The case was handled by the State Crime Command’s Child Abuse Squad, which investigates crimes against children including sexual assault, serious physical abuse and extreme cases of neglect.

The man was remanded in custody for a further mention of the matter on Monday.

Detective Acting Inspector Peter Owen said the girl was hospitalised for four days in a critical condition, but since then she had significantly improved.

While he confirmed the Department of Family and Community Services was aware of the matter, he could not make any further comment about what that might entail.

But he did urge the community to take notice and be “proactive” to protect children.

People can report suspected abuse or exploitation by contacting CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000 or the NSW child protection hotline on 132 111.