A Dumfries man has admitted killing a 15-week old baby boy by shaking him in a fit of anger causing fatal brain injuries.
Paul Burgess, 25, who was originally charged with murder, pleaded guilty to the culpable homicide of Zaiidyn Burke in Sunderries Avenue in October 2012.
A court heard he was left in charge of the baby for just over an hour.
Sentence was deferred at the High Court in Glasgow and Burgess was remanded in custody.
The court was told the baby was rushed to Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary and then transferred to Yorkhill Hospital in Glasgow.
The baby’s father Lee Burke was at the side of Zaiidyn’s mother Jade Caven when the baby died on 29 October, two days after Burgess’s assault.
The court heard that while Zaiidyn’s parents were at his bedside, Burgess went to a Hallowe’en party dressed in a costume and then went out drinking.
Burgess, who had started a relationship with Ms Caven some weeks after she gave birth to Zaiidyn, had been left in charge of the baby for just over an hour while the mother took a four-year-old girl to hospital after she fell and struck her head on a coffee table.
Advocate depute Iain McSporran, prosecuting, said “The accused was left to care for the baby, including giving him a feed.”
‘Choked a little’
The court heard that the accused had previously fed the child without incident.
However, when she returned home she realised something was wrong.
The child’s lips and face were turning blue and he appeared completely lifeless.
Ms Caven picked up her son and placed him on the couch and gently shook him, but there was no response.
The accused carried out chest compressions, while she phoned 999.
Baby Zaiidyn died as a result of his injuries in October 2012
The baby’s parents were described by hospital staff as “hysterical and distraught” in contrast to Burgess who appeared unconcerned, detached and very matter of fact.
The court was told that a CT scan of the baby’s head and spine at Dumfries showed the type of brain injury caused in baby shaking cases.
A consultant opthalmologist who examined the baby at Yorkhill Hospital confirmed the presence of haemorrhages in the eyes suggestive of a shaken baby.
‘Loss of temper’
He said that the extent and degree of the haemorrhaging was the worst he had seen since qualifying as a doctor in 1993.
The court heard that Ms Caven continued in a relationship with Burgess until a hearing held at Dumfries Sheriff Court led her to realise that Burgess had shaken the baby with sufficient force to cause his fatal injuries.
They are no longer in a relationship.
Mr McSporran told the court: “The Crown accepts that the accused, for some reason as yet unknown, but most probably associated with difficulty feeding the baby, suffered a loss of temper and shook him with sufficient force to cause fatal brain injuries.”
Judge Lord Boyd deferred sentence until next month when defence QC Edward Targowski will give his plea in mitigation. SOURCE