Man Arrested & Charged With Child Cruelty For Farting In Little Boy's Face (Police Don't Have Serious Criminals to Arrest?)

A man is accused of mistreating a child - by breaking wind in his face. Roofer Gary McKenzie, 22, denied the prank but said he had once farted in front of the boy's face accidentally, which he claimed had been 'funny'.

Prosecutor Paul Abrahams told Teesside Crown Court that if the incident had taken place in a rugby club after the victim had drank 10 pints it might have been dismissed as horseplay.

But in McKenzie's case it amounted to cruelty. The charge McKenzie faces states: "You wilfully ill-treated the child, namely by breaking wind in his face, in a manner likely to cause him unnecessary suffering or injury to health."

McKenzie faces three other charges: that he punched the boy on the arm and sucked his eye whilst "play fighting" and that he held a pillow over the face of another child, which he also put down to "playing."

Mr Abrahams told the jury that McKenzie's acts had been "cruel and bullying."

Describing the alleged dirty prank, he said the boy, who is under 16 and cannot be identified, had been lying down when McKenzie approached him.

The boy relived his ordeal in a police interview played to the court. He said: "He pumped [wind in my face]. He was right next to me and bending down, he was wearing shorts, his shorts were right next to my face. I said why did you do that? and he said he did it because he wanted to be nasty."