South East Wales

Amelia Jones: Granddad's head blow 'killed baby'

Amelia Jones Image copyright Gwent Police
Image caption Amelia died at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff

A grandfather killed his five-week-old granddaughter with a fatal blow to the back of her head, a court has heard.

Mark Jones, 45, of Cwmbran, denies murdering Amelia Jones in Pontnewydd near Cwmbran in November 2012.

Newport Crown Court heard she suffered a skull fracture, brain swelling and multiple rib fractures and had been injured at least three different times.

Prosecutors said Mr Jones had intended to at least cause grievous bodily harm to the baby.

Paul Lewis QC said: "The injuries inflicted upon Amelia included a fracture to the back of her skull, swelling to her brain and multiple fractures to her ribs.

"These injuries were all of different ages... and they demonstrate she had been subjected to violence on at least three occasions. But it was the most recent of these injuries to her [which] had brought upon her cause of death.

He argued the injuries "could not have been accidental" and were all deliberately inflicted by Mr Jones.

Sole care

The court heard Amelia was in the sole care of Mark Jones on the night in question.

She was rushed to Newport's Royal Gwent Hospital in a state of cardiac arrest after Mr Jones called 999 on Saturday 17 November saying he had gone to make a cup of tea and the baby had stopped breathing.

He told staff: "It's like she's panicking for breath; she gasped and then stopped."

She was transferred to the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff and died two days later.

The court has heard how Mr Jones frequently had sole charge of Amelia and spent a lot of time with her during visits to his daughter Sarah Jones, Amelia's mother, which could happen up to half-a-dozen times a day.

However Mr Lewis said the defendant had been largely absent from Ms Jones's life before she was 16 and had a strong dislike for Amelia's father, Ian Skillern.

He told the jury they would have to decide whether that had been the motivation for violence against his granddaughter.

In the days leading up to Amelia's death, Ms Jones said her father had told her "something odd".

He had said: "Even though I don't like her dad (Ian), I do not hold grudges against a baby."

The court heard Mr Jones had deceived his daughter about having cancer in order to try to ingratiate himself, including using crutches, appearing to inject himself with medication and making calls pretending to be a doctor backing up the cancer claim.

Mr Lewis said: " "This was a cruel deception... there was not even an ounce of truth in what Mark Jones told his daughter."

The trial continues.

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