A foster mother admitted before a court in England that she “violently shook” a one-year-old baby to make him stop crying. Baby Leiland-James Corkill died on January 7 last year, a day after suffering a brain injury at the home of his future adoptive parents – Laura Castle and her husband, Scott.
Mrs. Castle had hoped to adopt the baby. But emergency services were called to their home in Barrow, Cumbria, following an unfortunate incident.
Ms Castle had initially claimed the baby accidentally fell off the couch at her home, but admitted his manslaughter last week ahead of her trial at the Preston District Court. BBC reported. However, the 38-year-old denies the murder.
Baby Leiland-James was transferred to the care of Ms Castle and her husband in August 2020, before the formal adoption process, according to Daily mail†
When the hearing began, the court was told that the couple struggled to bond with the baby and even referred to him by aggressive names. On the fateful day (January 6, 2021), Ms Castle told the judges that Leiland-James “screamed” after breakfast. When her lawyer insisted, Mrs. Castle admitted that she had shaken the baby and that he hit his head on the armrest of the sofa and fell off her knee.
The Daily mail published the transcript of the exchange between the woman and her attorney, David McLachlan, QC.
“I shook my pretty boy. I just wanted him to stop crying,” she said, collapsing in the courtroom. The lawyer asked, “How many times have you shaken it?” to which she replied, “I don’t know.”
Mr. McLachlan further pressured her by asking, “How much force did you use to shake it?” Mrs. Castle replied, “I don’t know, but I’d say a lot.”
After the accident, Ms Castle said she picked up the baby whose “hands were stiff” and “he was panting”.
The lawyer then went on to ask the woman why she didn’t tell anyone what had happened. “I have no excuse. I just panicked. I was just terrified of the consequences of my actions and ashamed.”
The woman also said she suffered from depression because she couldn’t get pregnant and had always wanted children.