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Farnborough father 'killed baby girl by shaking', court hears

Ross Conlin denies killing four-month-old Kiera by shaking her 'in anger' while he was alone with the newborn

Kelly-Marie Rayner is charged with causing or allowing the death of her four-month-old daughter

A father is accused of murdering his four-month-old baby daughter by shaking her to death after failing to bond with her.

Ross Conlin, 29, from Farnborough, allegedly shook baby Kiera so violently 'in anger' while left alone with her that she had a heart attack and stopped breathing, Winchester Crown Court was told.

He denies murder and three charges of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Kiera's mother, Kelly-Marie Rayner, 26, denies one count of causing or allowing the death of a child.

At the start of the trial on Friday June 6, prosecutor Nigel Lickley QC said that Conlin, who works for Capquest in Fleet, had failed to bond with his newborn daughter.

The jury heard how the couple went to stay with Rayner's parents at their home in Farnborough, in May last year.

On the morning of May 6, Rayner left for a nail appointment and Kiera's grandfather, Paul Rayner, went out to the rubbish tip, leaving Conlin alone with Keira.

At 10.47am, Conlin dialled 999 to report his daughter was not breathing and was "limp". Asked if she had choked, he replied: 'Well, she was sick and then she was choking'.

Conlin, who is said to regularly use cocaine and cannabis, said Kiera had not been breathing for about four minutes and sounded "obviously distraught", the trial heard.

Paramedics revived Kiera and took her to Frimley Park Hospital, with Conlin following in a response car behind, however, her condition was so bad she was transferred to Southampton General Hospital for more specialised treatment.

She was pronounced brain dead and a life support machine was turned off at 6.30pm the following day, and she died in her mother's arms.

Tests on Kiera's bruised and marked body found her injuries "could be caused by vigorous shaking" and bone examinations revealed she had suffered a rib fracture four to eight weeks before her death.

There was evidence of three skull fractures and another rib fracture sustained three to five days before her death, plus bleeding behind her eyes.

Mr Lickley said: "The prosecution say that her father not only inflicted these earlier injuries, but that he murdered her at a time when he was alone with his daughter.

"He did so probably in anger."

Mr Lickley said that Rayner had failed to protect her daughter from Conlin, knowing that she had suffered repeated injuries at the hands of Conlin, "maybe out of loyalty to Conlin or fear that he might leave her".

The trial, which is expected to last for six weeks, continues.

 

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