Baby left with ‘brain injury’ after man allegedly shook him
A BABY that police allege was shaken violently by his mother's boyfriend is likely to have sustained permanent brain damage, an Ipswich court heard Wednesday.
Medical and police evidence was presented before Ipswich Magistrates Court when the accused man, 23, who cannot be named because it could identify the victim, made an unsuccessful bail application.
The man, from Lockrose, is charged with causing grievous bodily harm to a five-month-old baby boy at Bundamba on Tuesday, June 23.
The accused has indicated he will fight the allegations.
He appeared from the watch-house via video link, and repeatedly dropped his head onto a table before again sitting up.
He made no comment during proceedings.
Prosecutor Senior Sergeant Troy Voigt said police opposed bail on the basis the accused was an unacceptable risk to the community and was also on bail for other serious offences including, burglary.
Police outlined fears that he may fail to appear at court, potentially endanger the safety and welfare of other people, or interfere with witnesses.
In police facts before Magistrate Virginia Sturgess, the baby boy had been left briefly in the care of the man by his mother when she went to collect a child from school and went to the shops.
When she arrived home at the Lindsay St house, she was told that the baby had been taken to Ipswich Hospital.
Interviewed by police, the accused maintained his innocence of any wrong doing, telling officers he had been "rearranging the furniture" while the child was resting in a bassinette in the lounge room.
He said he noticed a blanket was over the baby's head and pulled the blanket down and saw the baby was limp and apparently not breathing.
The man said he had no phone and raised the alarm by running across to a neighbour's house.
He told police the baby began breathing again after he started doing CPR.
The baby remains under care in the Queensland Children's Hospital.
Sgt Voigt said in the police material before the court, doctors advised the baby had sustained multiple injuries including multiple subdural haemorrhages on the left and right sides of his brain, and bruising within the brain.
There were injuries to ligaments in the spine, retinal haemorrhages in both eyes, facial bruising, and a bruise to the left forearm.
An initial medical opinion given to police investigators was that the injuries were consistent with shaking, occurring from substantial acceleration and deceleration, and rotation forces being applied.
The police case is that the mother left the baby in a healthy condition when placed in the care of her partner.
Sgt Voigt told the court a medical report states the baby has been left with significant injuries, "potentially causing lifelong brain damage".
Medical evidence tended by police states that the baby has sustained a permanent brain injury of as yet unknown severity.
Defence lawyer Matthew Fairclough said no specific details had been given of any acts of violence being alleged against his client toward the mother or children.
Mr Fairclough said a comment attributed to the accused that he "would not be going down" for the offence should not indicate him being an unacceptable risk.
"He denies the allegations," Mr Fairclough said.
"He did give his version to police. He is 23, young and can live with his parents.
"He is no longer with her. Clearly there are mental health issues here.
"He has engaged a social worker for over a year."
Magistrate Sturgess said police had made allegations of physical violence and property damage, and that he had roughly handled another child, and had attempted suicide while in the police watch-house.
"It appears the mother of the child has provided some information to police. It does raise issues of concern," Ms Sturgess said.
While the allegations against him were untested, medical opinion was that the injuries were the result of being violently shaken and that there would likely be permanent brain injuries.
Ms Sturgess noted his significant criminal history and found that he did pose an unacceptable risk. Bail was refused.
The man was remanded in custody, with his case to be mentioned in Ipswich on July 22.