A two-year-old boy left to die by his biological father was removed from his foster family because they ‘weren’t black enough’, his outraged foster carer has claimed.
Baden Bond was taken from his foster family and returned to his biological parents, Shane Simpson and Dina Bond, in October 2006.
Simpson and Bond neglected Baden, who was born with methylamphetamine in his system. They left him in a dark room that stunk of urine and faeces.
One night in May 2007 Simpson dumped him at a boat ramp in Logan. He was never seen again and presumed to have drowned in the river.
In a shock twist, Daily Mail Australia can also reveal Baden’s death was the second to hit Bond and Simpson’s family in two years. Their daughter, Kareen, passed away in a ‘cot death’ a year before Baden was born.
The revelation comes as Baden’s foster family revealed their anger at how the system failed their beloved little boy – who was making progress with his medical condition before being returned.
‘We are so upset. We had Baden for most of his life. But he was taken from us because the indigenous worker told us we weren’t black enough to have him.
Abused, neglected, drugged from birth by his biological parents … but ‘adored’ by his foster family. Baden Bond, one-year-old, this exclusive photo shared by his foster family
‘We were told he was never to be returned to his parents because of how violent … Shane and Dina were. We were absolutely devastated.’
Baden (pictured) lost an older sister to SIDS
Baden was born at home in May 2005 with meth in his system.
He was taken to hospital and believed to have a mild case of cerebral palsy.
The indigenous boy was immediately taken into care with a Caucasian foster family at two weeks’ old.
‘I’ve had drug babies that scream and scream, but Baden didn’t,’ the foster mother said.
‘He just wanted to be cuddled. He was the most beautiful boy.’
Baden was with the family for most of his short life and they were crushed when they learned what happened to him.
In late 2006, he was taken away into the care of a second foster family, with the foster mother claiming she was told by an indigenous worker the family wasn’t ‘black enough’.
‘When he was taken from us, he was put in with a Kiwi family, because they told me, they raise him like the Aboriginal children (in respect to cultural traditions),’ she claimed.
‘But he would have only been there for a couple of months.’
Queensland child safety minister Di Farmer said while she can’t comment on specific cases, if a child can’t be raised by their family, or a suitable relative, authorities then look to ‘someone within the child’s community, language group or culture to help maintain cultural connections’, before they are placed with non-Indigenous carers.
Court documents have confirmed that Baden was then returned to the custody of his biological parents in October 2006.
But, shockingly, just two months later the Department of Child Safety (DOCS) assessed he was ‘at risk of neglect’.
Despite that, DOCS ruled he would be safe at home thanks to ‘intensive departmental involvement’.
That was despite his parents’ well-documented history of drug use and hostility to DOCS, the court heard.
‘He wanted to be cuddled’: Bond as an infant, when he was in the care of his foster family
Bond was born with methylamphetamine in his system and was taken to hospital
TROUBLING: A TIMELINE OF DOCS INVOLVEMENT WITH BADEN BOND
May 2005: Baden Bond is born at home with meth in his system and is taken to hospital.
Two weeks later, he is taken into foster care by the Department of Child Safety.
October 21, 2006: Bond is returned to the custody of his parents by DOCS
December 2006: DOCS assess Baden as ‘at risk of neglect’, due to their parents’ drug history and ‘poor history of communication with DOCS’.
But the department rules he is safe within the home with ‘intensive departmental involvement’
March 27, 2007: The last day Baden is seen alive by DOCS. He had a rash on his face ‘due to the family dog’
May 2007: Baden dies
June 2007: DOCS is told Baden is at his aunt’s house.
The family abandon their home and move to Nambucca Heads, NSW
2016: NSW Family and Community Services officers ask where Baden is. They are told he is with relatives.
The department applies to initiate care proceedings
March 2016: Police demand to know where Baden is and are told to ‘f*** off’
March 2017: Police charge Simpson and Bond
DOCS last saw Baden alive at home by DOCS in March 2007. He had a rash on his head, allegedly from the family dog.
What was really happening at their Housing Department home went beyond the worst fears of child safety workers.
Witnesses have told the Supreme Court Baden was living in a room that stunk of urine and faeces. Its windows were spray painted black.
His parents called him ‘little c***’, ‘devil’s child’ and ‘evil’ and Baden was seen at the home with unexplained bruises on his face.
His bedroom was locked off and visiting family members were banned from seeing Baden.
And then his father, Simpson, decided to rid himself of Baden altogether.
Queensland Supreme Court Justice Peter Applegarth described the moment Baden was left for dead in sentencing remarks last week.
‘(Simpson), you abandoned your two year old son as darkness fell in a park near the Logan River. No one else was there.
‘This vulnerable, abandoned toddler presumably was attracted to the water’s edge and drowned.
‘Having abandoned him so callously and in such danger and having driven off, you did not turn around 10 minutes later or return to that area that night to remove Baden from danger.
‘You went home and got on with your life’.
So began a decade of deception for Simpson and Bond, the court heard.
Police search the Housing Department property where Baden was last living with his biological parents in 2017
Bond’s parents, Dina Bond and Shane Simpson, kept him in a room with blacked-out windows that reeked of faeces and urine, a court heard
F*** off. We do not need to tell you anything. I gave him away. I do not need to tell you who to.
Shane Arthur Simpson’s denial to police
They fled to Nambucca Heads, on the NSW North Coast, lying to relatives – including Baden’s seven surviving siblings – and dodging authorities.
Eventually, police caught up to them. In 2016, Simpson told NSW Police: ‘F*** off. We do not need to tell you anything. I gave him away. I do not need to tell you who to.’
Simpson described the boy to Baden’s brother as ‘just a little dog f***er’ and ‘nothing but a troublemaking little c***’.
In 2017, he admitted to police that he abandoned Baden. But he never showed a shred of remorse.
Simpson said, because Baden was mentally slower than his other kids, he was ‘just tired of caring for him.’
The court was also told the parents, bizarrely, blamed Baden, because the discovery of drugs in his system had led them to lose custody of their other children.
So Simpson dumped Baden at the river, later claiming he said ‘sorry’ as he left him behind.
Baden’s grandmother, Carol Bond (in maroon) leaves court after Baden’s father admitted killing his young son
This is the park where Baden was dropped off and left for dead by the river
He was adored. It never should have happened to him.
Simpson was last week jailed for 12 years on the charge of manslaughter.
Bond served more than two years behind bars for being an accessory after the fact to manslaughter.
She was released on parole with time served.
As for Baden, his foster family just want people to know he was loved – although not by his vile biological parents.
‘You see all the comments (online) going ‘I hope he was loved’ – I’m yelling at the other end going ‘yes, he was!’
‘He was adored. It should never have happened to him.’
FULL STATEMENT FROM QUEENSLAND CHILD SAFETY MINISTER DI FARMER
Queensland’s child safety minister Di Farmer
The Child Protection Act prevents the Department from commenting on individual cases.
The safety and best interests of the child is always the Department’s highest priority.
At that time, the Child Protection Act 1999 required the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women to follow a set of steps when placing Indigenous children in care, as it continues to now.
The first preference is always to place the child with another member of the child’s family, which is the same as for non-Indigenous children.
If the Department believe an Indigenous child will not be safe with another family member they must then look for someone within the child’s community, language group or culture to help maintain cultural connections.
If this can’t be done, the law states that children can be placed with non-indigenous carers.
When this occurs, those carers make a commitment to ensure that child is able to maintain their cultural connections.