Baby who died in 2017 was injured by his mother, High Court judge concludes

A three-month-old baby found dead more than three years ago was injured by his mother, a High Court judge has concluded.

Mr Justice Newton was told that the cause of the little boy’s death remained “unascertained”, but post-mortem tests had revealed a number of leg and rib fractures.

The judge has decided that all the injuries were probably inflicted by his mother.

He had considered the case at a recent private family court hearing in Watford and published a ruling on Tuesday.

Council social services bosses had asked him to make findings after the woman gave birth to another child, who is now in foster care.

Mr Justice Newton said police had investigated following the baby’s death.

He said for reasons that were “not immediately apparent” to him, the police investigation had not proceeded.

The judge said the family involved could not be identified in media reports, and he has not named the council which began litigation.

Mr Justice Newton said the little boy had died in October 2017.

“Whilst the cause of death was, and remains unascertained, post-mortem six bone fractures were identified,” he said, in the ruling.

“Police inquiries ruled out that the injuries had arisen at birth, or by subsequent medical intervention, including the day of death (by CPR), and that remains the position – for reasons which are not immediately apparent to the court, the police investigation did not proceed further.”

Evidence showed that the woman loved her son but had struggled, said the judge.

“(He) was a demanding baby, who did not settle,” said Mr Justice Newton.

“I have read many messages from the mother at that time, when (he) was having a purple rage or indeed on other occasions when she was struggling with his care.”

The judge said the woman had once said “I really can’t do this anymore” and had spoken of feeling like “chucking” him.

He added: “I am satisfied on all the evidence taken as a whole, and in relation to the evidence that I have heard from the mother in particular, that she was much more likely to be responsible. I am satisfied that all the injuries were inflicted by the mother.”

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