A toddler believed to have been stamped to death was left so badly injured that she looked like a car crash victim, a court has heard.
21-month-old Ayeeshia Jane Smith died at her family home in Staffordshire in May 2014 after a laceration to her heart which is believed to have been caused by a forceful foot stamp to her chest, jurors at Birmigham Crown Court were told. She was reportedly heard saying ‘Stop mummy, stop daddy’ just days before her death, The Daily Mirror reports.
Pathologist Dr Alexander Kolar, who conducted a post-mortem on the girl’s body, told the court that she suffered from “blunt force trauma” and 16 injuries in total, including three broken ribs. Dr Kolar said: “The colour of these bruises indicate that there had been at least 24 hours between injury and death. More than trivial forces have been used. It is blunt force trauma using reasonable severe force.
“I would expect these sorts of injuries to occur from severe trauma to the chest or torso similar to that of a victim of a road traffic collision or a fall from a height. She has been subjected to a very significant trauma to the rear of her body resulting in a fatal chest injury. It was non-accidental.”
Her mother Kathryn Smith, 23, and Smith’s partner Matthew Rigby, 22, are standing trial accused of causing or allowing the death of a child and cruelty to a child. They both deny the charges.
The court had previously heard that the toddler had been taken into care by social services following welfare concerns but had been returned to her mother’s care six months before her death.
A 999 call was played to jurors in which Smith could be heard telling the emergency services operator that Ayeeshia had suffered a seizure. She said: "She's not breathing, there's nothing there, she's gone."
Emergency services were dispatched but paramedics were unable to resuscitate the toddler.
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