Former Bodmin man Shane Hawkins denies murdering baby son Kaydon
A Former Bodmin man who stands accused of murdering his 11-month old son, said his baby’s fatal head injury was caused when he dropped him onto a storage heater.
Shane Hawkins, 25, is standing trial Truro Crown Court charged with the murder of his son Kaydon at his Bodmin home in December 2010.
He claimed he dropped Kaydon from a height of three or four feet and he hit his head on a storage heater as he fell.
In a witness statement from Hawkins, which was read out in court, he claimed his son had sustained a head injury which later proved fatal.
Describing his version of events leading up to the accident, the defendant said that Kaydon had fallen out of his arms when had he attempted to reach into his cot and get his bottle.
He said: “He [Kaydon] was whingeing in his cot in our bedroom. I leant over to get the bottle and he fell over my arms, hitting his head on the radiator before falling on the floor. I think he was on his side.”
The court heard that Hawkins said Kaydon seemed fine and he placed his son on the hallway floor while he proceeded to make him a drink. But he then heard his baby being sick so he went to check on him to find him on his right side, and vomiting.
Hawkins, of the Kinsman Estate, called 999 and tried to resuscitate his baby before paramedics arrived and ambulance crews transferred Kaydon to the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro.
The court heard that Hawkins also told consultant paediatrician Diane Howlett, who carried out examinations on Kaydon when he arrived at Bristol Children’s Hospital, a similar version of events. But Dr Howlett said the injuries to Kaydon’s head did not follow the “normal” pattern of injury expected from a fall.
She described several bruises on his body including two round purple marks on his buttocks, purple bruising on his head and marks on his left ear.
“He had extremely severe injuries,” she said. “It is not the usual pattern that we would see when children fall. If the injury had been from a road traffic collision it might have been plausible.”
The court heard that Kaydon had been unwell with a viral infection for around a week before he sustained the head injury at his home.
Defence barrister Francis Laird suggested bruises to Kaydon’s body could have been caused by a number of different reasons.
The trial heard earlier this week from prosecutors, who alleged that Hawkins “killed Kaydon by shaking him so violently that he caused brain injuries from which the child could not recover”.
Martin Meeke, QC, added: “Having shaken him, he then either threw him down into his cot or struck him as he lay, causing bruising to the head.”
At around 2.45pm on December 11, 2010, paramedics and a GP were called to the Kinsman Estate, where they discovered the 11-month-old with serious injuries, the court heard.
The prosecution said Kaydon was taken to Treliske hospital where doctors treated the youngster before he was rushed to Bristol Royal Hospital for Children, where he died three days later.
Mr Meeke said: “The CT scan showed bleeding over the surface of Kaydon’s brain at a number of different sites.”
Kaydon had suffered retinal haemorrhaging in both eyes consistent with being shaken violently, he added.
Mr Hawkins, now of Blackwell Road, Warwickshire, denies murder.
The trial, which is expected to last for 12 days, continues.