MALACCA - The incessant crying of a hungry 22-month-old girl is believed to be what drove her mother to abuse her, causing her death eventually.
The child's 26-year-old pregnant mother was said to have told police that she had tossed her daughter in the air before knocking her head on the floor several times as she was annoyed with her continuous crying for milk.
The child died in Tampin on July 20.
The housewife, who is expecting her fourth child, and her 33-year-old husband were arrested while awaiting for the post-mortem report at Tampin Hospital on July 21.
According to earlier reports, the case was initially classified as sudden death after the mother told police that her daughter was playing in their home when she fell from a height and sustained serious injuries at 5.30pm that day.
However, the post-mortem showed that the child had two severe cracks on the rear of her skull, apart from fresh swelling on her forehead and nose. Old injuries were also found on her body.
The case was then re-classified as murder and investigated under Section 302 of the Penal Code.
It was learnt that child abuse was not suspected at first as neighbours around the child's home in Taman Padi Indah, Pulau Sebang, near the Malacca-Negri-Sembilan border, told police that the mother was "very loving" towards the child.
There were also no clues to indicate that the mother had abused her other children.
After the post-mortem results were released, police said they questioned the mother, who confessed to abusing the child.
State CID chief Asst Comm Kamaluddin Kassim said the case was solved due to teamwork from the Malacca police headquarters and the Alor Gajah contingent.
He added that the investigation papers would be submitted to the Malacca courts in the next few days.
Meanwhile, police arrested a 44-year-old childminder on Friday for suspected abuse of a five-month-old baby boy under her care at a home in Bukit Baru here.
The infant's 27-year-old father from Batu Berendam here lodged a police report after discovering abuse marks on his son's legs and a fracture on his right hand.