• Breaking News

    Friday, 4 August 2017

    Mother and boyfriend left baby dead with 28 broken bones and cocaine in his blood

    Mum and boyfriend killed baby with 28 broken bones and cocaine in his blood
    Katherine Cox has been found guilty of causing the death of her baby son Eli Cox 


    A mother of nine and her boyfriend have been found guilty of causing the death of her baby son, who suffered 28 fractures during his short life and had been exposed to amphetamine and cocaine.
    Five-month-old Eli Cox died in hospital on April 27 last year, two weeks after an incident at his home in Lapwing Close, Minster-on-Sea on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent.
    He suffered a ‘catastrophic’ injury while in the care of Katherine Cox and Danny Shepherd.
    His heart stopped beating and he stopped breathing some time after 5pm on April 13, Maidstone Crown Court heard. His heartbeat was restored, but he was not able to breathe unaided.
    Eli had suffered brain damage and two small round bruises were found at the back of his head.
    Mum and boyfriend killed baby with 28 broken bones and cocaine in his blood
    Danny Shepherd was also found guilty of causing his death

    Prosecutor Jennifer Knight said a post mortem found that death had been caused by a ‘shaking or shaking impact type’ head injury and that Eli ‘had also suffered skeletal injury on many different occasions leading up to his death’. Tests also found traces of the drugs.
    Cox, 33, and Shepherd, 25, of Faversham, who were the only adults present when Eli was injured, were both found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child between April 12 and 28, and causing or allowing physical harm to a child.
    They were also both convicted of possessing the Class B drug amphetamine.
    Sentencing will take place on a date to be fixed for a psychiatric report to be prepared.

    Cox and Shepherd – who calls himself Pickle – moved in together in November 2015 after they started dating that summer.
    A crowd of neighbours, some of whom tried to help, had gathered at the house by the time the ambulance arrived at 5.35pm.
    Mum and boyfriend killed baby with 28 broken bones and cocaine in his blood
    Bags of amphetamine drugs found in a shed at the home where he was found struggling to breathe
    Mum and boyfriend killed baby with 28 broken bones and cocaine in his blood
    Examinations found that Eli had been ‘regularly exposed to amphetamine and occasionally to cocaine'

    Cox later told police she had called the ambulance after seeing Eli lifeless on the bed with ‘ooze coming out of his nose’ and Shepherd was performing adult CPR on him.
    Police found five bags of amphetamine drugs in the form of white powder when they searched a shed in the couple’s garden on April 14.
    Post-mortem examinations showed Eli had oxygen deprivation to his brain, suggesting he had suffered a trauma, bleeding around his optic nerves and a brain injury.
    The oldest of his fractures was possibly from between seven to nine weeks before his death. A hair sample showed he had been ‘regularly exposed to amphetamine and occasionally exposed to cocaine’, Ms Knight added.
    Shepherd told police that neither he nor Cox had deliberately or accidentally injured Eli or lost their temper with him.
    The court heard there was a long, thin wooden stick, which was dubbed ‘Pickle’s beating stick’. But the couple said it was banged to get the dogs into the garden and was not used as a weapon.
    Libby Clark, from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), said afterwards: ‘This has been a difficult case to prosecute due to the complex medical evidence and challenges in establishing the involvement of either or both of the defendants in relation to the fatal injury caused to Eli.
    ‘When the trial started, our case was that either Danny Shepherd or Katherine Cox had caused Eli’s injuries and the death, or were aware that there was a significant risk of serious physical harm being caused to him, and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent this.
    ‘During the course of the trial and in light of the evidence given, it became possible to say that Danny Shepherd was the perpetrator of the injuries to Eli, including the assault which led to his death.
    ‘The fatal injury and older fractures identified by one of the medical experts showed very significant similarities. This considerably undermined the defence case that they were caused by another person.’

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