Story By: Sergey Panashchuk,Sub Editor: Joseph Golder,Agency:Central European News
The wife of the man arrested for throwing their five-year-old son from a fourth-floor window after having a drunken nightmare and not recognising his own child says he is a “good father”.
The shocking incident in which the child only survived because he landed in a snowdrift happened in the village of Bashkirivka, near the city of Chuhuiv in the Kharkiv Oblast Region in Ukraine.
Father Vitaly Liashenko, 40, was arrested for throwing his five-year-old son out of a fourth-floor window after drinking alcohol all evening.
The father is said to have been having nightmares when he woke up in a cold sweat and did not recognise his own five-year-old son Mykhaylo who was peacefully slipping beside him.
The father allegedly grabbed the child and threw him out of the window of his fifth-floor flat.
Mykhaylo survived the 46-foot fall as he landed on a snowdrift near the block of flats.
Neighbour Sergiy Byzov discovered the boy lying in a snowdrift and said: “I came and saw he was moving his legs and arms”.
Sergiy says he understood he needed to act quickly and he called an ambulance immediately.
Mykhaylo was hospitalised at Kharkiv City Children’s’ Hospital where doctors were surprised to find he had only suffered light injuries in the fall.
Olena Polishchuk, Deputy Head Doctor of Kharkiv Children’s’ Hospital, said: “He is a born survivor. The boy only ended up with bruises, maybe because of the snowdrift.”
After the father’s arrest he was charged with attempted murder. His wife Oksana Liashenko has now told the court: “I never saw him being aggressive, he is the perfect and loving father.”
Oleksandr Sviridov, Deputy of the Chuhuiv Police Department said: “The father does not work anywhere and regularly drinks alcohol. He said he had a bad dream, he did not say exactly what the dream was. After he woke up he grabbed the boy, opened the window and threw him out.”
Father Vitaly Liashenko said: “I had a dream and tried to save him as I sensed danger for my child”
After Oksana Liashenko’s speech the court decided to put her husband under house arrest despite prosecutors insisting on imprisonment for the course of the investigation.
Vitaly Liashenko is not allowed to approach his wife and son and will live at his parents’ home.
The father reportedly did not deny his guilt. He has been charged with attempted murder and could be jailed for between seven to 15 years if found guilty.
Grandfather Viktor Liashenko said the family loves little Mykhaylo and added that the father would never hurt him.
He said: “If he was not asleep he would never do such a thing.”
The first deputy of the Ukrainian National Police Vyacheslav Abroskin said in a statement: “The father is crying now.”
A police statement reads: “It is established he was drinking alcohol before. The family had not had any trouble with the law before.”
The investigation is ongoing.