Alleged baby killer ‘a caring, loving parent’, health visitor tells murder trial
A father who allegedly murdered his six-month-old son by forcibly shaking him was described as a ‘caring, loving’ parent by a senior health visitor.
Kalvinder Rangi, manager of Darlaston Health Centre, told a jury that the baby’s mother Laura Davies was the ‘dominant partner’ while 27-year-old Ricky Walker seemed to do all the housework and child care.
Davies, aged 25, could get Walker to do her bidding with merely a glance and did not move from the settee during three visits by the health professional to the family’s Black Country home to check on the progress of newborn Kayden Walker.
Mr David Mason, QC, prosecuting, quizzed the experienced nurse about the state of the council flat in Walnut Close, Moxley, which a midwife had described as ‘dirty’.
But Ms Rangi said she had ‘no concerns’ about hygiene at the property or about the care Kayden was receiving from his parents following her first visit on December 30, 2015.
She called again a week later when further health checks were made and conditions at the property were found to be ‘acceptable’, she told the jury.
Asked about how Walker and Davies were interacting with each other, Ms Rangi said ‘Dad was doing the running around’ while Davies sat on the settee with Kayden.
When Ms Rangi asked to see the child, she said Davies would undress him, then look over at Walker who would take Kayden to the health visitor.
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The jury heard she told the couple about the midwife's description of the flat, and said it was Walker who spoke up, explaining that he had 'let things slip' while Davies had been in hospital following Kayden's birth.
Birmingham Crown Court was told that health visitors are required to ask new parents about domestic abuse and that this conversation was usually with the mother.
However, on this occasion, Ms Rangi spoke to both parents.
In cross-examination by Ms Rachel Brand, QC, Ms Rangi agreed that the mother was ‘the stronger personality’ of the two and that she had described her as ‘the dominant partner’ in her notes.
Ms Brand asked: “It only took a look from her and he would do all the running around?” Ms Rangi agreed.
The defence barrister continued: "To the extent that you said to her it's important when you've had a Caesarian that you keep moving about?" The witness replied: "Yes."
She had recorded in her notes that Walker had 'made her smile' by telling her that he was cooking that night 'from scratch'.
Ms Brand asked: "Did you think here's a young man who is taking pride in cooking for the family – that he was a caring, loving father?" Mr Rangi responded: "Yes."
Walker, of Kendrick Road, Moxley, denies murdering Kayden on June 12, 2016.
Both he and Davies deny causing or allowing the death of their son, and child cruelty.
The trial continues.