Four-year-old girl locked inside fridge

A 32-year-old man from northern Sweden has been charged with serious assault following suspicions that he locked his four-year-old daughter in the family's refrigerator.

The girl was treated for life-threatening injuries at Sundsvall Hospital in northern Sweden last summer. Her father is also thought to have burned her with an iron.

The four-year-old girl was unconscious when she arrived at Sundsvall Hospital in June last year. Her body temperature was well below normal and she remained in a critical condition for several days.

Her parents told staff at the hospital that they had found her in an unconscious state and explained that she suffered from a very uncommon illness.

But hospital staff were not the only ones to doubt the veracity of the story.

“I think the parents caused it, either by sticking her in a fridge or freezer, or using cold water,” district prosecutor Lisa Eriksson told newspaper Dagbladet in January this year.

A report from the National Laboratory of Forensic Science confirmed that the girl was in good health and did not suffer from any unusual illnesses.

Police later found traces of the girl’s DNA on the bottom shelf of the family’s fridge. Injuries to her backside also suggest that she sat at the bottom of the fridge.

The girl’s father is further suspected of burning her with an iron in late 2005 while she was on temporary release from hospital, where she was being treated for a stomach injury.

When she returned to hospital, staff discovered the burns and reported the matter to the police, Sundsvall Tidning reports.

The suspect has consistently denied all allegations over the course of the investigation. He has a previous conviction for beating his wife.