Damilola death 'did not appear to be murder'

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A defence trauma expert in the Damilola Taylor murder trial said today he could not rule out that the boy had been stabbed with a broken bottle.

Alistair Wilson had told the court he believed 10-year-old Damilola died accidentally after falling on broken glass.

But in cross-examination, he told the Old Bailey it was impossible to be sure. Mr Wilson, an accident and emergency consultant, said he had not come across a deliberate stabbing in the thigh with a bottle. He also said he had come to his opinion based on photographs and had not seen Damilola's body, his clothing or the partially reconstructed bottle.

Mark Dennis, prosecuting, told him the pathologist Dr Vesna Djurovic believed he was "fundamentally wrong".

He replied: "I would disagree in clinical terms."

Dr Djurovic, who has told the court Damilola was wounded in a deliberate stabbing and cutting motion, may be recalled next week before the prosecution begins its closing speech.

Two brothers aged 16 deny murdering Damilola. Earlier this week, one of the boys said he would not be giving evidence; today the other boy confirmed he would not enter the witness box.

The judge Mr Justice Hooper told the jury that it might be sent out to consider verdicts on 16 April.