David Morris jailed for killing baby son Jay in Bargoed

A father has been jailed for six-and-a-half years for shaking his baby son to death.

David Morris, 28, of Bargoed, Caerphilly county, admitted manslaughter at Cardiff Crown Court.

The court heard he shook five-month old Jay with such force at the family home in December 2009 that the baby suffered brain damage and a torn liver.

Judge Nicholas Cooke QC told Morris: "You were callous and selfish in your behaviour."

Instead of getting medical help, Morris laid Jay down in his Moses basket and fled.

Persuaded to lie

Morris later blamed the baby's condition on a stomach upset then claimed Jay had been tipped out of his baby bouncer by his older sister.

The court heard that the baby's mother Nicola Payne, 21, believed he would still be alive if Morris had told doctors what he had done.

Prosecutor John Charles Rees QC said: "Morris stayed downstairs with Jay when Miss Payne went up to bed.

"At some point in the night he picked up Jay and shook him with sufficient force to cause the injuries from which he later died."

Eight doctors who examined the baby were all of the opinion his injuries were "non accidental".

When police launched an investigation, Morris persuaded Miss Payne to lie for him by saying she had fallen down the stairs while carrying the baby, the court heard.

'Complex investigation'

Miss Payne's victim impact statement said she was left "devastated at the loss of her baby son at the hands of the man she loved".

Judge Cooke told him: "There was no intention to kill the child but sadly the whole truth of what happened that night will never be known."

After the case, Det Ch Insp Pete Jones, of Gwent Police, said: "I am pleased that the sentencing brings to a conclusion a long and complex investigation which began with the death of a five-month-old baby who had died from injuries, the cause of which was not immediately obvious.

"Once the investigation began the investigative team undertook extensive lines of inquiry and called on numerous forensic and medical experts that proved that the injuries caused to Jay were non accidental.

"I am hopeful that the sentence provides some closure to the family of Jay who continue to grieve the death of this innocent child."