A Child, Youth and Family caregiver beat children in his care, called them ''peasant'' and ''charity kid'', and told them ''whatever happened in the home stayed in the home''.
Peter Wayne Purcell was employed by the Heretaunga Maori Executive in Hastings, which was contracted to the CYF Service to care for children and young people from difficult backgrounds and those before the courts.
In Napier District Court this morning Purcell, 54, pleaded guilty to three representative charges of assaulting three boys aged between 10 and 14 in 2010 and 2011.
A three-day trial had been set down to start today. Purcell entered his pleas before Judge Bridget Mackintosh, who granted name suppression until 1pm so he could inform his ill, elderly father.
The summary of facts includes details of the assaults. These include:
• Lifting a 12-year-old boy by the throat because he was angry the boy was talking while shooting a basketball through a hoop. When the boy cried Purcell told him to ''shut up'' and called him ''a little girl''
• Kicking the same boy in the leg causing him to fall to the ground
• Kicking the boy in his bottom because he claimed the boy was weeding a field of squash too quickly
• Calling the 10-year-old a ''fat boy'' and ''fat c...'' and whipping him with a tea towel while appearing drunk
• Ripping hair from the 10-year-old's head
• Hitting the 14-year-old on the top of his head if he was not weeding to Purcell's liking
• Kicking and hitting the 14-year-old, who he called a ''little peasant''. When the boy was seen limping the next day Purcell told him to ''harden up, mate'' and to ''stop being a little bitch''
• Grabbing the 14-year-old's hand and twisting it behind his back while calling him a ''charity kid''
Purcell told the boys that ''what went on in the house stayed in the house''. The 10-year-old was not allowed to contact anyone, including his social worker, to tell them what was occurring.
''It wasn't until he ran away and was able to ring his social worker that he could tell anyone about the situation in the home,'' the summary of facts states.
The three boys ran from Purcell's care, making it as far as Levin, where they lived off the streets for a few days until police found them and they were returned to the Heretaunga Maori Executive.
When Purcell discovered the oldest boy had complained about the abuse he beat him. When the boy put his arms up to protect himself Purcell punched him on the back and kicked him in his thigh and stomach.
When spoken to by police Purcell said the boys were lying, that he had never physically abused them and had just called them ''dumb arses''.
Purcell resigned from the role after charges were laid in March, 2011.
He was remanded on bail. He will be sentenced in August.
- © Fairfax NZ News