Court hears horrific details of baby's violent death
HORRIFIC details of the death of baby Lattrell Dodd at the tender age of 11 weeks reveals he suffered terrible violence in the last four weeks of his short life.
Brain injuries and bleeding were consistent with being violently shaken.
Medical details were read out in Gladstone Magistrates Court by prosecutor Sgt Barry Stevens when opposing a bail application by Lattrell's mother Megan Freeman, 22, who is charged with child cruelty.
The West Gladstone resident was later given bail but she sat quietly in court, at times wiping away tears, as Sgt Stevens detailed Lattrell's trauma and injuries, including seven skull fractures, more than a dozen broken ribs, two broken collarbones and a broken femur. He was also undernourished.
Sgt Stevens said police had evidence Lattrell was violently shaken the night before an ambulance was called to the family home on May 23, 2013.
He said injuries to Lattrell were very obvious to see and ambulance paramedics called police.
The ill baby was flown to the Mater Hospital in Brisbane where he died on May 31.
Christopher Allan Holland, 31, (also Dodd) the partner of Freeman, did not make a bail application but appeared in the dock before magistrate Mark Morrow charged with the manslaughter of Lattrell Dodd in May 2013; and child cruelty at a Koongal house in Rockhampton.
"He thought he was the father but he is not," Sgt Stevens said.
Sgt Stevens said Holland was heard to swear and growl at the baby, saying shut up, then seen to shake him violently, "his head to go in all directions".
Sgt Stevens said an older child at the time was being cared for elsewhere and magistrate Mark Morrow asked where was Department of Child Safety involvement in this. "What were they doing in relation to this child?" Mr Morrow asked.
Sgt Stevens said Freeman denied knowledge of any broken bones but knew about a lump to Lattrell's forehead, saying it was the result of another child being in the cot. Evidence would show that some of the broken bones had not been healing properly.
"So the case is she did not supply adequate food, health care and protection to the child," Mr Morrow said.
Sgt Stevens said the mother had a cannabis problem and a history of drug and property offences, and police would allege Holland sought to influence her and other witnesses, including making up reasons for the baby's injuries, saying to blame a five-year-old girl.
Both cases were adjourned to Rockhampton Magistrates Court on December 17.