Parents of 4-year-old disabled girl eaten by rats after starving to death accused of murder

Parents of 4-year-old disabled girl eaten by rats after starving to death accused of murder

WARNING: DISTRESSING CONTENT Willow Dunn, four, who had Down Syndrome, was found dead in a home in Brisbane, Australia with deep pressure sores on her back, indicating she had been unable to move before she died of starvation

The dad and stepmom of a vulnerable four-year-old girl whose face was eaten by rats after dying of starvation will face trial for her murder.

Willow Dunn, four, from Brisbane, Australia had deep pressure sores when cops found her dead at her home on May 25 last year.

Little Willow Dunn was found with deep bed sores and her face had been ripped apart by rats as she lay dead in the home for two days.

Willow's father Mark James Dunn.

The horrific details were revealed at a pre-trial hearing yesterday for her father, Mark Dunn, and his partner Shannon White. Both are both charged with her murder and child cruelty.

Willow, who had Down Syndrome, was found in an "extremely confronting" state, cops said at the time.

Officers believe she died two days before being found, Australian Associated Press reports.

Speaking at Brisbane Magistrate's Court yesterday, Senior Constable Andrew Kitas said cops were told by paramedics at the scene that it looked like the girl's face had been eaten by rats.

Forensic Pathologist Dr Andrew Kedziora added that she had pressure sores that went down "to the bone".

The wounds were found mostly on her back, which suggests she was unable to move, he said.

"If a child is able to move even a little bit and change the position this will immediately improve the circulation or blood flow through this area and slow down or reverse those changes," Dr Kedziora said.

Shannon White (centre) is taken from the Morningside police station after she was arrested in Brisbane.

"So the fact that these pressure sores are present and they are so deep shows that for quite a while the child did not move at all."

Some sores were also found on her pelvic bones, which could've been caused by pressure from clothing, like nappies.

The vulnerable youngster also showed signs of having pancreatitis, which is often caused by poor nutrition and chronic dehydration, the doctor said.

Willow's most recent doctor visit was in 2018.

The dad and stepmum of a little girl found dead in a Brisbane home last year will face trial for her murder.

She was "quite lively and behaving normally" at the time, the court heard.

A height reading taken at that appointment and one taken at the time of her death suggested she may have stopped growing, Dr Kedziora said.

The eight months he cited as the normal amount of time for the drop in height to happen can be sped up if a child suffers intermittent disease of childhood infections.

Dunn and White will stand trial at the Supreme Court but a date is still to be set.

Both are still on remand after each being charged with one count of murder and another of child cruelty.
Parents of 4-year-old disabled girl eaten by rats after starving to death accused of murder
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