Man accused of attempting to kill his four-month-old daughter by making her swallow a 10-cent coin and prescription drugs.
The man, who was 19-years-old at the time of the alleged crime has pleaded not guilty to two counts of attempted murder of the baby girl.
The court heard yesterday that four-month-old girl was rushed to hospital after her mother found her gasping for air on the night of August 13, 2013.
The father stayed by the baby’s bedside overnight in the hospital.
The following day a nurse witnessed the baby vomit up the 10c coin, but she then grew ill again becoming lethargic and unresponsive to pain.
Crown prosecutor David Meredith said in his opening statement that the father was on prescription medicine for schizophrenia and ADHD. A test showed both of those drugs present in the baby’s urine.
The court heard the coin lodged in the back of the baby’s throat and Mr Meredith said if it had not moved the baby girl would have died reports The Courier Mail.
Mr Meredith said that the man asked the baby’s grandmother, a day before she swallowed the coin “What would happen if a baby swallowed a coin?”
The grandmother told him that the baby ‘would die’.
The court was told that the father “made two intentional attempts to kill his child by making her eat the coin and when that failed, he fed the medication by putting it in her food when she was in hospital.”
The court heard that a text message received by the accused by the baby’s mother saying ‘It was me. I did it. I’m so sorry. I wasn’t ready too (sic) be a mother and I knew that’ was most probably faked.
Mr Meredith said that there was no record on the mother’s phone or on the Telstra network of the message being sent to the father and that the accused had a history of faking text messages.
The defence lawyer for the accused said it was all circumstantial and that no one had seen the father give the coin or the medication to the baby.
UPDATE 25 February
The man has been acquitted of all charges.
He pleaded not guilty to two counts of attempted murder of the four-month-old girl and two alternate charges of unlawful assault and causing grievous bodily harm.
The prosecution alleged he tried to kill his daughter by making her ingest a 10 cent coin, saying he had asked the baby’s grandmother what harm swallowing a coin would have on the baby. They argued unsuccessfully that when that didn’t work he poisoned her with medication while she was in hospital.
His defence lawyer told the jury no one had seen the father give the coin or the medication to the baby and that the evidence against him was circumstantial.
The man walked free yesterday after the jury delivered a not guilty verdict after about two hours of deliberations.
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