Father of boy starved to death by grandparents testifies at coroner’s inquest

An inquest into the death of a five-year-old boy fatally starved by his grandparents is hearing that children’s aid had no protection concerns about the couple when they got custody of the boy’s eldest sister.

TORONTO — An inquest into the death of a five-year-old boy fatally starved by his grandparents is hearing that children’s aid had no protection concerns about the couple when they got custody of the boy’s eldest sister.

Jeffrey Baldwin died in November 2002 weighing 21 pounds — about the same as he did on his first birthday.

Elva Bottineau and Norman Kidman were granted custody of Jeffrey and his three siblings by two different children’s aid societies, which were unaware at the time that both Bottineau and Kidman had been previously convicted of child abuse.

The couple later went to court to obtain full, legal custody of the four siblings.

The coroner’s inquest into Jeffrey’s death is hearing today from the boy’s father, Richard Baldwin, who says when Jeffrey’s oldest sister was a baby she was put in the care of Bottineau, who had complained to the children’s aid society about the girl’s parents’ fighting.

A document from the Catholic Children’s Aid Society written in 1995 after Bottineau got legal custody of the baby says there is no reason for further involvement with the family as there were no protection concerns about the grandparents.

Bottineau and Kidman were ultimately convicted of second-degree murder in Jeffrey’s death and are serving life sentences.