The mother of an autistic teenage boy who was allegedly chained inside his home has not been charged.

On Tuesday we shared the story of a 16-year-old boy who was discovered chained to a bed in his Blacktown house.

His 38-year-old mother, who also has five other children, reportedly arrived home shortly after and was arrested, but police on Wednesday said she has been released without charge.

Authorities are still liaising with health and welfare departments.

A family friend said the Sudanese family didn’t have enough help to look after the boy.

“Sometimes he runs away, the father is not here, (he is) in Africa,” she told News Corp.

She said the boy’s mother cared about him but was tired and had no help.

The boy was taken to Westmead Hospital for observation and was released on Tuesday night, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Autism Awareness Australia CEO Nicole Rogerson said it was clear the family needed more support.

“It doesn’t shock me, nor surprise me. It just saddens me.

“It is never OK to restrain or abuse a person with autism,” she told the Seven Network.

Ms Rogerson said the boy should have been at school.

“I think we have let this family down.”

I hope they get the extra support obviously needed to help them cope. It must be such a hard situation for them.

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  • It is so hard as you only see what has been shown in the media, No matter what I think people need to try and think what it would be like to be in this woman’s shoes rather than judging her


  • i hate the fact that this child was chained to a bed. that is horrible. i dont completely understand what is like to have an autistic child as i dont have one but i do know people with autistic children and i have never once heard of them needing to chain their child to the bed. it alarms me that the mother just gets away with this. i do hope that they get support going forward because this poor child cant be restrained all his life when the mother cant cope. there is an obvious need for the family to get trained in how to deal with the boys behavioral issues.


  • The strain the mother was under to have chained her son to a bed must have been huge as there was no case of neglect of this child nor the other five.


  • Not enough support and more reserceneeded for autism in general. As loke everything can vary. Feel so sad for Mum as she has her hands full, but where is the help, am quite disgusted with our health system (or lack of ,more resource required.


  • It is disturbing to read such story, do you think the health system failed us?


  • This was horrific and saddened me so much, I cried. Whilst not in that family’s shoes, it just seemed barbaric. They obviously need urgent help and support. I hope they get it.


  • He should be in School – but in all likelihood, it’s the School refusing to take him. A friend’s Autistic child is allowed in School for 1 hour and 20 mins a day – he’s in year 7. He’s never had a full day of School – even though he is now in a Special Class with supposedly trained teachers. He’s a lovely child with some behavioural issues. The School says they can’t control him. I’ve babysat him – he’s fine. You just have to engage him in something he is interested in – not sit him in a corner with a sheet of Maths and a sheet of English questions and not expect him to get bored and muck up.

    They never said how long he was chained up for – I’m assuming she chained him up so she could go to the shops – and would have unchained him when she got home. It’s probably the only way she could go get food.

    People say that there is support out there – sadly in many cases, there is not. If my friend’s child was low IQ with Autism – there is an entire Special School he can go to. Because he is very intelligent and Autistic – they don’t know where to put him.


  • I’ve worked as a psychiatric nurse for many years in hospitals and institutes and there were times we had to restrain clients for their own safety or for others (including our own) safety, despite the fact their was plenty of personnel.
    You might keep a person with Alzheimer also on a small structured unit behind locked doors. This is just as much a form of restraining, but we do this to keep the person safe and protect him/her from harm. The same way we could see this case.
    It would be good though to have a formal written advice about this from the professional in charge of this boy.
    I feel for this family who’re in lack of support and hope things are going to change for them !


  • I believe the police and authorities have done what legally is required, we do not live in the house or know the family or child or how bad his autism is, let’s just hope he gets the care he needs and the family get the support.


  • I would hate to be virtually a single mum with 6 children in a country where I had not grown up and trying to understand the system where I am now. I think this mom was trying her best – she had to shop for her family and for whatever reason couldn’t take her autistic child with her, so she kept him safe by making sure he couldn’t leave the house and be molested, hurt, run over, or whatever, and probably this would be acceptable in the country she had left. Obviously if she wasn’t charged by the police, they accepted what she had to say. Who knows why he isn’t in school – has the school sent him home because they can’t cope with him, has no school accepted him, we don’t know. Before we judge and criticise, maybe we should walk a mile in her shoes.


  • When my severely autistic son was about 2 years old, I was reported to Police by neighbours because I had tied some rope to his pants so that I could hang out the washing and not have to worry about him running away. (He had run away before and the Ministry of Housing refused to put up secure fencing/gates). The police checked with his doctor, who confirmed that his advice to me was to use the rope to ensure his safety. I feel sorry for the mother in this case. It appears to be her way of keeping her son safe also. It isn’t always easy to ask for help for some but it is actually harder to get that help! My son is nearly 34 and is in the photo with me below.


  • yes so sad that she didn’t have the help she needed. it would be so hard by herself but hopefully it’ll never happen again.


  • So sad. I hope the family gets the extra support they need


  • So sad. I’m glad she wasn’t charged. Hopefully now she will receive the help she needs for her son.


  • Not for me to judge …but chaining him up is wrong and thats that.


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