Dad fined for flicking thumb-sucking daughter

AN ATTEMPT to get his eight-year-old daughter to stop sucking her thumb landed a father before Toowoomba Magistrates Court.

The girl had sustained a sore eye after being struck by a football, but, when she was being seen to by a teacher's aid at school, she mentioned her father had hurt her the night before, police prosecutor Senior Constable Des Neijens told the court.

Police Child Protection Investigation Unit officers were called and spoke to the girl's father who explained he had been trying to stop his daughter from her habit of sucking her thumb and had flicked her hand away from her mouth.

In the process, he had inadvertently flicked the girl's cheek, the court heard.

The man, who is not named so as to protect the identity of the girl, pleaded guilty to a charge of common assault.

His solicitor Shane MacDonald told the court his client instructed that the girl had developed bucked teeth and a deformed roof of mouth from sucking her thumb and his client had being trying to get her to stop.

The girl hadn't actually sustained any injury from her father's actions, Mr MacDonald submitted.

Magistrate Damian Carroll accepted the man didn't know the girl had been injured and fined him $750 without recording a conviction.

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