On Tuesday, the District Court in Klatovy began discussing the appalling way of abusing a child. The couple who had tortured the man’s stepdaughter for almost three years in a small village in the Klatovsk region sat on the dock.
Defendants before the Klato court. Agent of the victim, lawyer Jaroslav Liška.
| Video: Diary/Milan Kilián
According to the indictment, the girl was humiliated, cursed at her, she was not allowed to eat at the table with them, and many other cruel things were done to her. In the end, she ended up in a wooden shed in the garden, where there was no water, toilet or heating. According to experts, the schoolgirl suffered a permanent health disorder due to the behavior of her stepfather and stepmother. Man and woman before the court they denied the blame.
According to the indictment, the stepfather and stepmother were to abuse the girl from September 2019, when she was only twelve years old, until June 2022, when she came to the neighbors to ask for help and they reported everything. “They didn’t care enough about her emotional needs and her nutrition when they didn’t provide her with enough quality, warm food and she couldn’t share a meal with others. She had to additionally prepare food herself, they humiliated her with insults. The woman shouted at her every day, which made the minor afraid, and therefore she tried to avoid her presence at home. They didn’t take her on family outings and pushed her away from the rest of the family in all sorts of other ways. They did not provide her with sufficient clothing and she had to wash her dirty clothes herself,” state attorney Katarina Peková said in the indictment.
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She added that everything came to a head on Easter 2022, when they moved all her personal belongings to the wooden house in the garden, which was without social facilities, water and heating. They equipped the windowless attic of the house with sleeping mattresses, bed linen, a table, chairs and a wardrobe where the minor had to live. “She could only go into the house three times a day for food and to use the toilet in the house, otherwise she had to go outside to the garden. According to the experts, as a result of this long-term behavior of the accused, the minor’s personality development was deeply disturbed, and she was diagnosed with a permanent health disorder, namely personality changes after a catastrophic experience. This disorder severely limits the minor’s daily normal way of life and can be assessed as a permanent serious consequence on her health,” Peková concluded.
Source: Deník/Milan Kilián
Stepmother VV (51) and the girl’s stepfather JV (56), whose names and faces cannot be published due to the protection of the victim, rejected the indictment before the Klato court through their lawyer. “They do not feel guilty, they do not agree with the description of the act or the legal qualifications,” said the lawyer. The couple then refused to testify or answer the judge’s questions, insisting they both read prepared statements. Judge Jan Kasal thus read their statements from the preliminary proceedings. There, the man explained that the girl was not his own, but that he had taken custody of her and her younger sister, who was already his, ten years ago, when their mother was no longer taking care of them.
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He and his partner portrayed the little girl in the worst colors. According to them, the girl had lied and had problems with her. “The mistake was that I tried to raise her. I should have let her grow like firewood in the forest or in a children’s home,” declared VV. Just like JV, she claimed that the girl was in the log cabin, as they called it, voluntarily. According to them, she could also go home for food or to the toilet, but not at night. But they admitted that she had to wash her clothes by herself or that she wasn’t even with her family on Christmas Eve. “But I brought her dinner and gifts to her room,” claimed JV, who repeatedly smiled as he read the statement. Like his partner, he denied that the child was scolded. Only the woman admitted that she sometimes slapped her.
The investigation will continue in December with the questioning of forensic experts, neighbors, a worker at the children’s home where the girl is now, her former foster mother and others. The girl herself will not be called, although the defense requested it, but her questioning will be replayed, excluding the public. For the crime of mistreatment of a trusted person, both defendants are threatened with imprisonment for two to eight years, the public prosecutor suggested in the indictment that they should be sentenced to three years in prison. The representative of the injured party, Jaroslav Liška, requested the defendants to pay the girl half a million crowns as non-pecuniary damage.