ENTERTAINMENT

The jury is to decide which parents will violently shake their premature daughter to death


A premature baby was violently shaken to death at least three times, a murder trial has heard.

Holly Roe suffered brain injuries at least three times and her tiny chest was broken in 12 places before paramedics found the eight-week-old cold to be unresponsive.

The last head injuries had made Holly unconscious despite the extreme pain from her broken ribs, a jury said.

Mother Tiffany Tate, 22, and father Michael Roe, 33, are accused of murdering their daughter.

Sally Howes QC for the Crown said on the balance sheet of evidence the charge is Michael Roe murdering his daughter.

Ms. Howes said, “It is the prosecution's position that the strength of the evidence suggests that Michael Roe was responsible.

Mother Tiffany Tate, 22, is on trial for murder

Father Michael Roe (left) (33) and mother Tiffany Tate (right) (22) are on trial for the death of the child

“There is also evidence that Tiffany Tate had the opportunity to commit this illegal act. You have to decide who is guilty of the murder. Michael Roe is the last to see her alive.

“The injuries were so severe that she would have been passed out at the time of the injury.

Michael Roe obviously had no patience with Holly while she was feeding.

"Syringe her nose and pinch her toe to make her cry."

Ms. Howes QC said there was actually a rehearsal of Holly's death when she stopped breathing a few weeks earlier.

She said, "When she stopped breathing, she was solely responsible for Michael Roe."

Both parents are accused of murder and allow the other to kill their baby.

Tiffany Tate admitted she was struggling to connect with the premature Holly.

In an interview, she told the police that she was frustrated and had lost her temper while feeding.

Ms. Howes told the jury they should consider having the opportunity to shake their baby in a 20-25 minute window while Michael Roe slept.

The scientific evidence showed that Holly was illegally killed, Ms. Howes said.

The jury was told they had to decide if either parent murdered the child.

Post-mortem examinations revealed that her fatal injuries were caused by shaking at least three times.

Eight week old Holly Roe was taken to Pembury Hospital in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, where she was pronounced dead

Eight week old Holly Roe was taken to Pembury Hospital in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, where she was pronounced dead

Experts described their injuries as non-accidental, abusive head trauma.

Sally Howe's QC for the Crown said, “This is consistent with the brain rattling around.

Although Holly Roe was two months early, she was fine when she was released from the hospital.

"This was a perfectly healthy baby that will eventually collapse catastrophically and fatally," said Ms. Howes.

Experts said she would have been noticeably ill for every caregiver.

The court heard Michael Roe told health visitor Tiffany Tate that she was going to throw Holly against the wall during a nighttime food.

She admitted that for the first few weeks in the hospital as a premature baby, she had difficulty bonding with the baby and had difficulty waking up at night.

Mr Roe told nurse Tiffany Tate that she couldn't handle the new baby at night but was a good mother during the day.

Former foster child Tiffany Tate was only 19 when she moved in with Michael Roe.

They lived together in Crowborough, East Sussex when baby Holly was born two months premature on July 14, 2018.

Ms. Tate admitted she had trouble connecting with her daughter while she was still in the premature baby unit, which continued after Holly was allowed home.

When the baby cried it became frustrated and panicked, Ms. Howes said.

Michael Roe told a health visitor that he was taking night feed because Tiffany Tate was not patient with Holly.

Roe and Tate are pictured with baby Holly before she died last September

Roe and Tate are pictured with baby Holly before she died last September

The court heard that Ms. Tate agreed to tell her former partner that she felt like throwing the baby against the wall.

In the early hours of September 10, 2018, emergency services were called into the house after the couple reported that she was not breathing.

Holly was cold, not breathing, and having no heart activity at all, Ms. Howes said.

Paramedics fought to save her before she was taken to Pembury Hospital in Tunbridge Wells, where she was pronounced dead.

Post-mortem examinations revealed numerous signs of injury to her tiny body.

Eight week old Holly had suffered three head injuries and 11 broken ribs before she died.

The first was a few weeks before she died, the second was a few days earlier, and the last brain injury was within 48 hours, Ms. Howes said.

The pattern of injuries indicated that they were the result of non-accidental and abusive head trauma, said consulting neuropathologist Prof. Safa Al-Sarrau.

Forensic pathologist Dr. Charlotte Randall said the death was due to a head injury.

The likely mechanism of Holly's injuries would have been violent tremors.

Multiple fracture injuries to Holly's chest were also commonly associated with shaking-type head injuries, Ms. Howes said.

Former pediatric neurosurgeon Peter Richards said in his opinion that Holly's behavior was not normal after the injuries suffered.

“He would have expected her to be passed out from the point of injury.

"The injuries she presented with were inconsistent with normal behavior, and especially with feeding," Ms. Howes said.

Dr. Nicola Cleghorn said Holly was deeply affected by the pain from her broken ribs.

They would not have been caused during the resuscitation, Ms. Howes said.

& # 39; It is highly unlikely that a fracture could accidentally occur without a caregiver noticing the event and acting immediately.

"Dr. Cleghorn considers the most likely cause of the broken ribs to be an inflicted injury, most likely excessive compression around her chest, and coupled with opinions about the traumatic brain injury, this would support a trembling episode," Ms. Hawes said.

Holly died on September 10, 2018.

The jury was told that the defendants are back on trial after their original trial was abandoned in March after national lockdown.

The Hove Trial Center was one of the few courts that were Covid-compliant and reopened after the lockdown.

Lawyers and jurors are separated by plexiglass screens.

The defendants sat at a social distance in the safe dock without speaking to one another.

Miss Tate and Mr. Roe both deny the murder and cause or allow their baby to die.

The trial, which is expected to last four weeks, is continuing at Lewes Crown Court in Hove.

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