Accused mother chooses to not give evidence

A Berkeleymother accused of causing the death of her young son by allowing his severe head and stomach injuries to go untreated has chosen not to give evidence in her Supreme Court trial.
Nanjing Night Net

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, did not take the stand on Tuesday during the brief defence case, which centred on evidence from forensic pathologist Dr John Hilton.

Dr Hilton said he reviewed the two-year-old boy’s autopsy and reports from forensic pathologists who had given evidence earlier in the trial, and while largely agreeing with their findings, he ruled out suggestions that the boy’s significant head injury could have been caused by severe shaking.

The court has previously heard the toddler was admitted to hospital just before 4.30pm on August 3, 2012, after he was found unresponsive in his cot.

Paramedics and doctors worked on the boy for more than an hour but he could not be revived.

An autopsy found he had substantial injuries including bleeding on the brain and a perforated gut, both believed to have been the result of blows suffered just a few days before his death.

The boy’s mother was charged with manslaughter by criminal negligence, but pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors say she failed to seek timely medical attention for the boy’s serious injuries.

Dr Hilton told the court on Tuesday that the nature of the subdural haemorrhage was not consistent with the child having been shaken.

Crown prosecutor Chris Maxwell is expected to start his closing address to jurors on Wednesday morning, to try to convince them that the woman failed in her duty of care to the boy.

He is expected to point to evidence from several doctors about the nature of the boy’s injuries and the “obvious” symptoms of pain and discomfort they say he would have been displaying in arguing that the woman was negligent in not getting him treatment.

Defence barrister Winston Terracini, SC, is expected to argue that the woman did not know how serious the injuries were because any signs of sickness the boy displayed were generic in nature.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.