‘Intervention at this level is very rare’ - Norfolk parents arrested over 15-stone son, aged 11
08:35 06 June 2014
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The parents of an 11-year-old Norfolk boy who weighs 15 stone were arrested after concerns for his welfare.
Doctors relayed worries about the King’s Lynn schoolboy’s health to police after he was brought in for treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
His parents told The Sun newspaper he is now on a strict diet and keeps active by playing computer games on his Nintendo Wii console.
The 5ft 1in child has a body mass index of 41.28, which is almost double the level medics advise is safe.
Social workers have met with his parents, and agreed terms for them to stick to.
A failure to do this could trigger legal proceedings to take the boy into care.
A spokesman for Norfolk police wrote: “Norfolk Constabulary can confirm a 49-year-old man and a 44-year-old woman, both from the King’s Lynn area, were arrested in March on suspicion of child neglect and cruelty under section 1 of the Children’s Act 1933.
“They have been released on police bail pending further enquiries.
“When dealing with sensitive issues such as obesity and neglect of children, officers from the force’s Child Abuse Investigation Unit work closely with partners, significantly with both health care and social services, to ensure any response to address them are proportionate and necessary.
“Any action taken by any agency will be subject to a joint strategy between all partner agencies and will always be taken with the welfare of the child and their protection from harm as paramount.
“While it is inappropriate to comment on this case specifically, it is important to stress that intervention at this level is very rare and will only occur where other attempts to protect the child have been unsuccessful.”
A Norfolk County Council spokesman said: “We cannot comment on individual cases but our priority will always be the health, well-being and safety of Norfolk’s children and we will always do all we can to support families to meet their children’s needs.”