MALACCA - A 6-year-old girl, who is believed to be a victim of child abuse, died of severe head, chest and abdominal injuries here on Sunday morning.
According to police, the injuries on Noor Sofia Syaqira Abdullah was a result of blunt force trauma.
State deputy criminal investigation department chief Superintendent P.R. Gunarajan said the girl was pronounced dead on arrival at the Malacca Hospital here at 7.55am that day.
The mother of the child had handed over the girl, when she was 2 months old, to live with a female relative.
Gunarajan said police believe the girl was beaten by the relative's live-in partner, a contract worker, at their rented house in Taman Seri Telok Emas.
He said a police report was lodged by the examining doctor who noticed that Sofia's forehead was swollen and the body was covered in bruises, both new and old, which were believed to be from long-term abuse.
The 35-year-old relative has been remanded to assist investigations into the case, which has been classified as murder.
Speaking to reporters at the state police headquarters yesterday, Gunarajan said the relative's live-in-partner has a criminal record involving 12 drug and robbery offences.
He still faces four similar offences.
The man was also detained under the Emergency Ordinance at Simpang Renggam, Johor, in 2008.
"We believe he is a drug addict who is prone to aggressive behaviour.
"We also believe he had been abusing his partner's 5-year-old child from her previous marriage."
He also said they were looking for the girl's mother, who was in her early 30s.
Initial investigations revealed that the relative and her live-in partner had moved to the house in Taman Seri Telok Emas in April and the family was being financially supported by the man's parents, he said.
He said that investigations revealed that Sofia had been squirming in pain after being severely beaten by the man on Saturday night and the relative told police that the girl stopped making any sounds about 4am the next day.
"Since the woman did not have transport to take the child to the hospital, she called her live-in partner's parents for help and they came from Kuala Lumpur to take Sofia to the hospital early Sunday morning."
Police are looking for Amiezul Al-Ikram Mohamed, 32, from Jalan Kampung Bandar Dalam, Gombak, to assist in the investigations.
Those with any information are urged to contact the nearest police station or ASP R. Kumares at 019-6905585.