Baby allegedly killed by grandad had fractured skull and ribs, court hears

Baby Amelia Rose Jones
Baby Amelia Rose Jones

A five-week-old baby who was allegedly murdered by her grandfather had a fractured skull and ribs as well as swelling to her brain, a jury has heard.

Amelia Rose Jones was rushed to hospital in 2012 after grandfather Mark Jones rang 999 saying his granddaughter had simply stopped breathing.

Newport Crown Court heard the 41-day-old baby had been subjected to violence on at least three occasions - with the fatal blows coming from her grandfather while she was in his sole care.

Prosecution counsel QC Paul Lewis said: "The injuries inflicted upon Amelia included a fracture to the back of her skull, swelling to her brain and multiple fractures to her ribs.

"These injuries were all of different ages ... and they demonstrate she had been subjected to violence on at least three occasions. But it was the most recent of these injuries to her had brought upon her cause of death.

"The prosecution case is that in the short tragic life of Amelia the injuries which she came by could not have been accidental.

"These injuries were all deliberately inflicted upon her by her grandfather."

The court heard that Jones had been largely absent from his daughter Sarah's life - and only made proper contact with her when she was about 16.

Mr Lewis said Jones had a strong dislike for Amelia's father - Ian Skillern - and the jury would have to decide whether that had been the motivation for the violence against his granddaughter.

In the days leading up to Amelia's death, Sarah said her father had said something "odd" to her.

He had said: "Even though I don't like her dad (Ian), I do not hold grudges against a baby."

The jury was also told that Jones had lied at great length in order to try to ingratiate himself with Sarah - even telling her he had cancer when he did not.

"He told her that he needed surgery and turned up at her home on crutches," Mr Lewis said.

"He asked his daughter to help him in and out of the bath and supervise him while he appeared to inject himself with medication."

The jury heard that Sarah then began receiving phone calls via a withheld number from a "Dr Hughes" - who, unbeknown to her, was actually her father putting on a different accent.

Mr Lewis said: "Dr Hughes told Sarah that her father indeed had cancer and was gravely ill ... and had a limited future.

"This was a cruel deception ... There was not even an ounce of truth in what Mark Jones told his daughter."