Child cruelty trial continues

A TRIAL is continuing today for two people accused of assaulting a child.Stephen Leatherby, 24, of Franciscan Way, Ipswich, and a 17-year-old girl who cannot be named, have denied two charges of causing actual bodily harm to a person under 16.

A TRIAL is continuing today for two people accused of assaulting a child.

Stephen Leatherby, 24, of Franciscan Way, Ipswich, and a 17-year-old girl who cannot be named, have denied two charges of causing actual bodily harm to a person under 16.

Leatherby has also denied cruelty to a child but the girl has admitted to a similar offence.

A witness at Ipswich Crown Court today told how she used to live at Cambridge House, in Anglesea Road, Ipswich, last year where the accused girl also lived. She said that she had seen the girl winding the baby and thought at the time that she was doing it wrong.

The witness said: "She was not supporting her head, she had one hand on her chest and was tapping her back with the other. The baby's head was floppy, she seemed not to be hitting her, but tapping her a bit hard. I just thought it was down to inexperience."

The witness also said that two support workers were also in the office at the time and was surprised no one had picked her up on it, but she added it did not seem like the girl was hurting the baby.

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The witness also said she had heard Leatherby shouting at the baby in the girl's room and she added that the baby often screamed but had been diagnosed with colic, so it was thought that was the reason why.

The alleged offences are said to have happened between September and October 2002.

The trial continues.

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