THOSE TO WHOM EVIL IS DONE DO EVIL IN RETURN
By Erin Pizzey
In thirty years of working with violent and dysfunctional families, the
most difficult cases ever presented to me are when the primary care giver of the child is
an abusive woman. There is almost no information on women as abusers and virtually none on
women as paedophiles.
What Anna Climbies parents did not know when they allowed Marie
Therese Kouao to take their daughter to a new and better life, was that they were putting
their child into the hands of a sadistic perverted paedophile. In African families and in
Afro Caribbean families, children are often shared amongst friends and relations. So when Kouao who met Annas parents twice at funerals impressed them with her talk of an
affluent life they were happy to see their child offered what they believed to be an
excellent education and a future away from the poverty they were now experiencing.
Anna was not the first child that came into Kouaos hands and only
time will tell if she was as violent and abusive to other children in her care. The
pattern for women like Kouao is that they deliberately offer to adopt children from
vulnerable gullible parents and then proceed to use the child for their own violent and
Women sexual abusers satisfactions are far more diffuse than that
of men. But both sexes achieve high levels of sexual satisfaction from the pain and the
wounding of their victims. Kouao like other women I have dealt with did not need an
accomplice to fulfil her violent sexual needs but in many cases having a willing onlooker
and a participator increases the sense of perverted excitement. Kauais narcissistic
feeling of omnipotence escalated each time she escaped detection by the various agencies
that refused to look at the evidence before their eyes.
There is always a ritual for women like Kouao that precipitate the
beatings and the torture. In Kouaos case it was her ability to project her own
demons upon the frail form of a little girl. If Kouao is properly interrogated it will be
possible for her to describe the necessary steps that she took to enable her to create her
private concentration camp for the child. The burnings, the beatings and the encasing of
the childs body in a black bin liner will all have a significance known only to
This sort of sadistic violence is not random but can be traced back
into damage that was done to Kouao herself. It was no accident that she came upon Carl
Manning and he became her partner. One of the most amazing elements in abusers like Kouao
is just how many people they can suck into their perverted reality.
Manning was living at home with his mother. His perverted sexual
fantasies were confined to watching pornography on his computer and frequenting
prostitutes. Until he met Kouao, his sadistic fantasies were confined to his imagination.
However, in so many cases, sexual abusers like Kouao have an unerring instinct when they
meet a willing accomplice.
At no point, did Manning have any instinct to have pity or compassion
for a tiny tortured child. His disgust at Annas incontinence and his complicity in
the violence must bear witness to events in his own childhood. His subordination to
Kouaos perverted lifestyle was complete. He called the child Satan Anna
and admired her ability to sustain painful beatings.
Living with Kouao and Anna in his tiny flat, he was engulfed by
Kauais powerful reality. Her hold over both Manning and Anna was complete. Having
what must have been a bankrupt reality of his own fed only by prostitutes and pornography,
Manning was ripe to fall into Kouaos clutches.
Anna, no doubt threatened with further torture should she ever ask for
help, also believed in her tormentors omnipotence. Within the walls of the flat
Kouao created a perverted world or her own. It is hard to describe to a general public
just how hallucinating this perverted world is for those wrapped up in its dark folds.
The inner world of the dangerously perverted becomes a reality for the
victim and the anticipation of the torture becomes more terrifying than the moment when
the violence begins. After a time when the beating stops gratitude sets in which often
binds the victim to the torturer who is now all powerful in the victims life. How
many times must that child have believed as she was taken to two hospitals, dragged in
front of social workers and taken to church, that at some point some caring adult might
What the child could not have known is that there is a refusal on the
part of our society to look at the evil perpetrated by women. Had Kouao been a man,
Annas parents would not have allowed her leave their village. British immigration
authorities would have looked twice at a man bringing a small girl into this country. They
may well have run a check on the childs passport and discovered it was forged.
This is not the only case I have been involved in when female
paedophiles have moved in and out of the country with children on forged passports.
Hospitals, social workers and the police are trained to look for male perpetrators of
violence and sexual abuse. They are not trained to question female perpetrators like Kouao
and she used their unwillingness to imagine her as an abuser to her advantage.
There is a climate of fear in this country that threatens any attempt
to question womens role in dysfunctional behaviour. For those of us who work in the
field of domestic violence, we have been pilloried and persecuted for suggesting that
women can and are just as capable of violence as men.
Anna Cameron, a friend who had child minded for Kouao in the past, saw
that Anna had cuts on her fingers, across her cheek and eyelid and marks on her body that
she suspected were cigarette burns. She took Anna to Central Middlesex hospital but she
was discharged after an overnight stay because the child protection doctor, Ruby Schwartz,
preferred to believe that Anna suffered from scabies rather than from child
I wonder if Ruby Schwartz was blinded by the fact that the abuser was a
woman and black? I wonder if Ruby Schwartz, Ms. Arthurworrey a member of Haringeys
child protection team along with PC Karen Jones had failed to be informed that women
perpetrate the majority of child abuse cases?
According to The Guardian report The death of Anna Climbie
(Saturday, January 13 2001) Arthurworrey and Jones failed to visit Anna because they fear
catching scabies. I do not believe that they seriously feared scabies. What they did
fear was Kouaos violence should they confront her with her abusive behaviour.
Kouaos whole life style was one of threatening behaviour, lying
and intimidating anyone who crossed her. Only the death of a child brought her villainous
career to an end. As Manning sits in prison penning his love letters to her, hopefully one
day he is able to take the responsibility for his part in the death of an innocent child.
W.H. Auden wrote:
I and the public know
What all schoolchildren learn,
Those to whom evil is done
Do evil in return.
(September 1, 1939 (1940).
All we can do as a country is to mourn for Annas short and
tortured life and make a vow that should we be faced with what looks like an act of
violence against a child, we will have the courage to go to the rescue.
29 Lebanon Park,
Twickenham TW1 3DH.
About Erin Pizzey
More information on child abuse, and
child abuse by women:
Getting rid of Dad
- A BBC program on sexual abuse by children provided an estimate of perhaps as many as 35
percent of child sexual abuse of children being done by women, and that the reality may be
worse than that. (BBC Panorama (10 pm Monday 6th, October 1997) Child Sexual Abuse by
Women. Researchers are now asking about child sexual abuse by women, now estimated at
250,000 children, or 35% or more of all reported child sexual abuse. This compares with
the more openly admitted and traditional non-sexual abuse/neglect of children by women
where the incidence rate is about 60%.
Summary of program: http://www.vix.com/menmag/panosumm.htm,
Full transcript: http://www.vix.com/menmag/panofull.htm