A court learned that an 18-month-old baby who was allegedly killed by her adoptive father may have been thrown against the wall or a hard floor, as reported by The Guardian.
Toddler Elsie Scully-Hicks died in May 2016 and her newly adoptive father, Matthew Scully-Hicks, was arrested and charged with killing her. During Matthew’s trial, which is ongoing, the jury saw a consultant pediatrician who detailed the many injuries that contributed to the death of Elsie.
Dr. Stephen Rose addressed the jury on Thursday and said that the toddler was likely shaken violently, saying she was “rocked backwards and forwards so that her head was flexed down on to her chest and flexed backwards.”
He noted that this action likely caused her brain to bleed, one of the many atrocities the 18-month-old was forced to endure.
“This mechanism would then cause the subdural bleeding, or the bleeds around the brain, and the retinal hemorrhages and also it would cause her to stop breathing,” he said.
Elsie also suffered from a skull fracture, which he attributed to her being thrown against a wall or a hard floor.
“There must have been a cause of the fracture, skull fractures don’t occur spontaneously, and so the only mechanism for a skull fracture is if there was a blow to the head, either during the shaking injury which culminated in Elsie being thrown against a hard floor, or possibly her head being knocked against a wall,” he said.
Additionally, Elsie suffered from a series of micro-fractures in her ribs, which Dr. Rose said were likely caused by the hands of an adult forcibly crushing her chest. Doctors also noted that the 18-month-old suffered retinal hemorrhages in both eyes, as reported by The Independent.
Matthew Scully-Hicks, 31, is accused of inflicting a catalogue of serious injuries on Elsie Scully-Hicks https://t.co/XBRgqtFRFp
— WalesOnline (@WalesOnline) October 12, 2017
Matthew’s defense team asked Dr. Rose whether or not these injuries could be explained by a malfunctioning child carrier, but he said that it was unlikely. Another pediatrician, Dr. Marian McGowan, addressed the jury and said it was unlikely that the injuries Elsie suffered “arose separately and coincidentally.”
“I think the likelihood is that they are part of a single event. I think the only explanation is that the child had suffered significant trauma,” she said.
Matthew, along with his husband Craig, adopted Elsie in September 2015, when she was 10 months old, as previously reported by CrimeOnline. The 31-year-old is accused of doling out months of abuse before the toddler eventually perished, according to BBC.
Earlier in the trial, the jury was presented with text messages written by Matthew that referred to Elsie as a “psycho” and “Satan,” with neighbors testifying that they heard Matthew yelling obscenities at the 18-month-old, saying “shut up you little f***ing brat” and “shut up you silly little c***.”
Matthew Scully-Hicks, who worked as a fitness instructor, has denied murdering his adoptive daughter and husband Craig told the jury that their home was “full of love,” as reported by BBC.
The trial is expected to last a few more weeks.
[Featured Image: South Wales Police]