Fitness instructor found guilty of killing 18 month old daughter he called ‘Satan in a baby grow’
A gay fitness instructor has been found guilty of killing his 18 month old baby girl after adopting her.
Matthew Scully-Hicks, 31, gripped his daughter Elsie around the rib cage, shook her and may have banged her head against a hard surface.
He called the baby “satan dressed up in a baby grow,” and inflicted months of abuse on the baby, the court case heard.
Paul Lewis QC, for the prosecution, told the jury at Cardiff crown court that Scully-Hicks lost his temper with Elsie and caused her “catastrophic injuries”.
Lewis said: “He shook her and he struck her head against some hard surface, or he used a hard object to hit her to the back of the head. She was just 18 months old. She was defenceless and vulnerable.”
The couple first adopted Elsie in September 2015 and the adoption process was finalised nearly eight months later.
But less than two weeks later baby Elsie died after suffering traumatic head injuries.
Elsie died at University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, after the decision was taken to turn off ventilators.
Doctors felt the one-year-old would not survive based on the head injuries she had incurred, with bleeding found on both sides of her brain.
After the tragic death police examined electronic devices belonging to Scully-Hicks.
The court heard that the 31-year-old messaged a friend to say, “I’m going through hell with Elsie” 12 days after adopting her.
“Mealtimes and bedtime are like my worst nightmare at the moment.
“She’s been up there screaming for 10 minutes non stop. She’s just stopped but I doubt that’s the last I’ll hear tonight.”
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He sent a message to his husband, Craig, who he married in 2012, calling the baby a “pyscho”.
On September 29 2016 he messaged his husband to call the baby, “Satan dressed up in a baby grow”, the court heard.
Prosecutor Paul Lewis QC said: “Elsie was found unresponsive by paramedics after Scully-Hicks attacked her at his home in Fairwater, Cardiff, on May 25 last year.
Mr Lewis said: “The injuries that caused her death were inflicted upon her by the defendant shortly before he called emergency services that day.
“His attack upon her that day was not the first time he had employed violence towards Elsie, nor was it the first time he had caused her serious injury.
“His actions on the late afternoon of May 25 were the tragic culmination of a course of violent conduct on his part towards a defenceless child – an infant that he should have loved and protected, but whom he instead assaulted, abused, and ultimately murdered.”
Dr Nia John, a consultant paediatrician, told the court it would be “unusual” to suffer two such fractures in the same fall.