Traumatised Afghan veteran jailed for killing 20-month-old daughter

 

A soldier left traumatised after being severely wounded during a surprise attack in Afghanistan and witnessing the deaths of five of his colleagues was jailed for six years yesterday for killing his 20-month old daughter.

Lance Corporal Liam Culverhouse, 25, had already admitted causing the death of Khloe Abrams, who he assaulted in May 2011 when she was just seven weeks old.

She spent more than a year in hospital before dying in the Rainbow Children’s Hospice in Loughborough of pneumonia bought on by her injuries in November 2012.

The Grenadier Guardsman had been medically discharged from the army after losing his right eye in the attack by a rogue Afghan policeman at a checkpoint in Nad-e-Ali in Helmand Province in November 2009 which claimed the lives of five of soldiers and wounded six others.

He later told a Cutting Edge documentary for Channel 4 that he survived by playing dead after being shot six times in the face, arms and legs with an AK-47.

Eighteen months after returning home he assaulted Khloe at the family home in Northampton, resulting in her suffering severe brain damage and fractures to her skull, ribs and limbs.

Judge Jeremy Baker told Culverhouse yesterday at Northampton Court that while it was clear he was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder that did not diminish the fact that he had caused the death of his daughter.

“No one who has understood what happened to you whilst serving as a member of the British Army in Afghanistan can have anything but profound sympathy for the effect which it had upon you,” the judge said. “Not only will you have to live with the physical symptoms including blindness in your right eye, but it is clear that the trauma of that and of witnessing the death of a number of your fellow soldiers has caused you to suffer from significant psychological damage.”

“However, you acknowledged to police and others that prior to your experiences in Afghanistan you had always had a temper which manifested itself in other circumstances.”

In the Cutting Edge interview, broadcast in 2010, Culverhouse described the moment he heard his attacker return to make sure he was dead following the incident at Checkpoint Blue 25.

“When I was playing dead, I was thinking he’s going to shoot me again, he’s going to shoot me again. But he didn’t. So, I’m lucky, very lucky indeed,” he said. “It just all went so fast, and then when he saw me he just basically unloaded a magazine firing at me. He only managed to hit me six times. Thank God.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness