Andrew Gilgannon cleared of attempted murder of child

image captionMr Gilgannon was cleared at the High Court in Glasgow

An amateur footballer has been cleared of trying to kill a one-year-old girl in North Ayrshire.

Andrew Gilgannon, 23, from Irvine, denied throwing the child into a cot at a house in the town in September 2009, leaving her with brain injuries.

He also denied making two confessions of guilt and blamed the child's injuries on her relatives.

A jury at the High Court in Glasgow returned a not guilty verdict after three hours of deliberations.

During the trial, the court heard how the child was rushed to hospital and had to have an emergency operation to remove part of her skull after Mr Gilgannon allegedly attacked her.

Child crying

Jurors were told how the girl was in hospital for six weeks and now wears a skull cap to protect her brain and has limited use of her left arm and leg.

The child's mother, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told the court that she had gone to the shops and left Mr Gilgannon looking after the child.

She claimed that she received a phone call from him saying that the child would not stop crying.

The mother said she told him to put her into her cot to see if that would settle her.

The witness said that when she returned home, Mr Gilgannon was standing with the girl in his arms and she "knew something was wrong".

She said the child, who had a "pale face" and irregular breathing, was taken to hospital a short time later where she had the left part of her skull removed because of a blood clot.

Confession claim

The witness claimed that Mr Gilgannon later confessed to her on bonfire night after he had been drinking.

She added: "He said 'it was me, it was me that put your wean in hospital'."

The woman told the court that she went to the police the next day and told them what he had said.

Mr Gilgannon lodged a special defence incriminating the girl's grandparents and other family members.

Jurors found him not guilty after a four-week trial at the High Court in Glasgow.

More on this story

Related Internet Links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.