In a trial for a man accused of killing his newly adopted 18-month-old baby, a pediatrician explained that the toddler was likely thrown against a wall or a hard floor.
Elsie Scully-Hicks was killed in May 2016. Fitness instructor Matthew Scully-Hicks, 31, has been charged with killing her.
According to The Guardian, Dr. Stephen Rose gave testimony on Thursday, detailing the injuries Elsie suffered. In addition to being shaken violently, Rose said she was likely “rocked backwards and forwards so that her head was flexed down onto her chest and flexed backwards.”
He said that damage probably caused her brain to bleed. “This mechanism would then cause the subdural bleeding, or the bleeds around the brain, and the retinal hemorrhages and also it would cause her to stop breathing,” Rose said to the jury.
The 18-month old also suffered a skull fracture.
“There must have been a cause of the fracture, skull fractures don’t occur spontaneously, and so the only mechanism for a skull fracture is if there was a blow to the head, either during the shaking injury which culminated in Elsie being thrown against a hard floor, or possibly her head being knocked against a wall,” Rose said.
Elsie also suffered multiple microfractures in her ribs. Rose attributed that to an adult using their hands to forcibly crush her chest. The Independent reports the child also suffered retinal hemorrhages in both eyes.
Matthew and his partner adopted Elsie in 2015. The BBC reports that he allegedly abused her before the deadly incident. The jury has been shown evidence in the form of text messages: texts written by Matthew in which he called the baby “psycho” and “Satan.” His neighbors testified they heard him verbally abuse Elsie, calling her a “f***ing brat” and “little c***.”
The father has denied claims that he murdered his adopted daughter.
[Featured Image: South Wales Police]
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxgen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.