Police probe 'malicious' Fife park incident as toddler suffers serious head injury

A two-year old has suffered a serious injury needing 32 stitches under general anaesthetic to close a head wound, while playing in Letham Park.

Friday, 20th August 2021, 2:17 pm

The incident happened while the child was in the park with her granny, and next to the disabled swing section on July 25.

As is common with all young children just finding their feet, Esme Philip stood on the bottom of the metal fencing while trying to peer over at the swings, when suddenly, and without warning one of the heavy metal panels came loose and toppled onto her.

She was rushed to hospital where doctors were concerned with her lapsing in and out of consciousness so she was kept in overnight and received an operation the following day to clean and close the wound.

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Two-year-old Esme Philip

Now Esme’s mum, Stacey, is calling for answers and information as to how a fence held together with specialist security bolts – and which had apparently been inspected by Fife Council two days earlier had come apart.

Stacey said: “A Fife Council investigation has ruled out vandalism, but we still don’t know what happened and we are asking the public for help.

“An inspector carried out a check on the park two days before we were told, but on the paperwork there is no note on what they check, how they check it and what condition the bolts were in or if they were even confirmed to be present.

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"These are anti-tamper security bolts that shouldn’t have been easily taken off.

"There just seems to be a missing part of the story and for my 2 year old daughter I would like to ask everyone publicly if they know of anything that could help give us answers.”

John Rodigan at Fife Council said - "The corporate investigation and Health and Safety Executive overview, confirmed it was satisfied with our inspection which followed industry regulation.

"It would appear that the equipment was tampered with following our scheduled inspection. Police Scotland is now investigating."

A police spokesperson said: “Following a report of a two-year-old girl being injured after a gate fell on her in a park in Leven, officers have carried out enquiries and are treating the incident as malicious.

“Anyone with information is urged to contact Police Scotland through 101.

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