Baby suffered horrific head injuries before death, court told

A pathologist has told a court how a two month old baby girl killed by her dad had horrific head injuries, a healing rib fracture and visible leg and arm injuries when she examined her.

Thursday, 20th October 2016, 4:47 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 6:24 pm

Home office pathologist Alison Armour, who carried out a post mortem examination on Daisy Mae Burrill at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, told jurors an internal examination showed extensive bruising to her scalp and a “star shaped” fracture on the left side, with one fracture line 7.5cm long.

She added: “It is my view this child could have been picked up by the legs with a swinging type motion. The head then impacted a firm object and I would not exclude the edge or arm of the settee.”

Her father John Burrill, 31, of Warren Close, Fleetwood, admits manslaughter but denies murder, claiming he threw Daisy-Mae onto a sofa, which had hard objects on, and then ran upstairs with her due to “frustration at her continuous crying.

Jurorsat Preston Crown Court appeared upset and two women in the public gallery left the court room during the evidence.

She said: “There was a red mark, not a bruise, and this was 2cm to the midline of the forehead.

“Just feeling her head on the left side you could readily feel that this area was fractured and there was also obvious swelling.

She said in her view there had been an impact with a “firm hard surface”.

Earlier in the case, a police officer told the court how he was present when the couple was told it would be better to turn off her life support machine on March 14.

He said Burrill was “fidgety” at his daughter’s bedside in hospital.

He said: “When we were in the medical room when he was saying goodbye, he was emotional, I would not describe it as crying but definitely emotional.”

Previously, the court heard Burrill’s then-partner Ashlee Cox, mother of Daisy-Mae, described him as “moody” when he got up to feed the two-month-old at about 5.30am on March 11. The couple had smoked cannabis the previous evening.