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'Dad gave different versions of events as to how son died'.

Byline: bronte howard Reporter bronte.howard@walesonline.co.uk

A FATHER accused of killing his 15-weekold son gave different versions of events as to how the infant died, a court has heard.

Cody Rhys Williams-Jones died at the University Hospital of Wales (UHW) in Cardiff on December 8, 2016, after suffering "catastrophic head injuries" and bleeding to the eyes.

Matthew Jones, of Beaufort, Ebbw Vale, is on trial in Newport Crown Court charged with murder and manslaughter. He denies both charges.

During the third day of the trial yesterday, witnesses recalled Jones telling them what happened to Cody on the evening of December 7. Their statements include Cody falling from Jones' arms onto the bed, falling from Jones' arms onto laminate wood flooring and Cody hitting his head on the side of a wooden changing table in the living room.

It is the prosecution's case that Jones, 26, killed the infant and that Cody's injuries were likely due to an "episode of abusive head trauma involving a shaking mechanism".

Jessica Williams, sister of Cody's mother Paula Williams, told the court Jones said Cody hit his head on the side of a changing table.

Jessica Williams, who is expecting a child of her own, said she rushed to the property Jones shared with Ms Williams and Cody when she found out something had happened to the baby.

She told the court she asked Jones what had happened while the family was waiting for an ambulance to arrive. She said he replied: "Cody had kicked off into me and hit his head on that."

She told the court Jones pointed to the wooden changing table in front of the TV.

When asked by Richard Smith, defending Jones, if it was possible he had been pointing upstairs to where the bed was, she said: "No, he pointed to the changing table".

Susan Ahmed, the aunt of Paula Williams, said in her witness statement that Jones initially told her he was holding Cody with one arm while reaching to grab teething gel from a dressing table in the bedroom but the baby "kicked off" and pushed off Jones' chest, falling onto the laminate wood flooring. She said Jones told her Cody hit the bottom of his head but she didn't know if he was referring to wooden flooring in the couple's bedroom upstairs or in the living room.

Mrs Ahmed said: "He said he [Jones] was clumsy and stupid. He said Cody kicked off and fell back off his arm onto the laminate. I said you need to be careful because babies wriggle and he said 'accidents happen'."

Mrs Ahmed said later in the day she asked Jones again what happened and claims he told her Cody fell onto the laminate face first and hit his forehead. She said when she questioned the different version of events and asked how Cody hurt his neck, he replied: "Oh I don't know. I'm confused."

Mr Smith told the court on Monday that Cody sustained his injuries when he fell out of Jones' arms onto a bed on his back before bouncing and landing on his front.

Bethan Morgan, a department sister at Nevill Hall Hospital in Abergavenny, the first hospital where Cody was treated, also said Jones told her on December 7 that the infant fell onto the floor - but he had "stumbled" and Cody had "fallen".

Miss Morgan said she wrote the details of the conversation onto a continuation sheet that was put into Cody's medical record and he was transferred to UHW the same day.

PC Andrew Whittington, who was called to the Nevill Hall Hospital following reports that an infant had been injured, told the court that Jones said Cody fell onto the bed.

In his notes, he recorded Jones saying: "I was holding him in my left arm with him resting on my chest and I reached over for the teething gel when Cody kicked back off my chest and fell onto the bed on his back and hit the base of his head before bouncing up and landed on his front."

On Monday, the trial heard that a postmortem examination found Cody suffered bleeding on two parts of his brain, swelling on the brain, retinal hemorrhages (multiple small bleeds in both of his eyes) and a bruise on his forehead.

The medical cause of death given by the pathologist was "a catastrophic head injury".

The trial continues.

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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 27, 2019
Words:740
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