Medic accused of murdering baby son

PUBLISHED: 13:07 10 June 2010 | UPDATED: 18:00 25 August 2010

ON TRIAL: Gavin Gibbs.

ON TRIAL: Gavin Gibbs.

A MOTHER wept in court as she described the horrific injuries to her baby son who was allegedly murdered by her paramedic husband.

A MOTHER wept in court as she described the horrific injuries to her baby son who was allegedly murdered by her paramedic husband.

Gavin Gibbs, 41, of Brook Vale, Erith, left three-month-old Charlie Gibbs with fractures to his skull, upper arm, left leg and ribs, the Old Bailey heard this week.

The London Ambulance paramedic is also accused of causing four rib fractures to his son's twin sister.

On October 23, 2008, while the father was home alone with Charlie, he called 999 and told them his son was dead. The baby was taken to Queen Mary's Hospital, Sidcup, where he was given Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation but died two days later.

Charlie was found to have suffered brain damage and bleeding within the skull on a least two occasions, one old and one recent, and fractures to his left leg at the knee and ankle were caused about one to two weeks before he died, the court heard.

On Tuesday his wife Joanne Gibbs, 38, took to the witness stand and told jurors she was "horrified" when she only learnt a year after the death that Charlie had suffered a skull fracture when he was just two-months-old.

She told the court: "I just couldn't understand why there was a skull fracture. I was horrified.

"Gavin kept asking me if Charlie had hit his head on anything or if there was anything I could remember."

Jurors were told that in January this year he returned from a meeting with his solicitor with a new explanation.

Ms Gibbs said: "He said Charlie had fallen off the sofa. He said he wanted to take a picture so he went to get a camera.

"He turned around and heard a thud and Charlie was on the floor.

"I was horrified. I felt all these emotions.

She also said she had noticed something wrong with Charlie in the early hours of October 6, and when he was taken to hospital she was told he had a fracture to the upper arm. She told the court: I was absolutely horrified,'

"I couldn't understand why my baby had a fracture. Gavin was really upset. I remember him crying."

Mr Gibbs had worked a night shift before his son's fatal injury on October 23, 2008. While on duty, he received a call from his wife to say that his twin sister was having difficulty breathing.

The father logged it as a 999 call and took his daughter to Queen Mary's Hospital where she was diagnosed with inflammation of the small airways in the lungs.

His wife went to the hospital while the father took Charlie home. The child was being looked after by a friend whilst he got some sleep.

He collected his son at approximately 4.10pm and two hours later took him to stay with neighbours whilst he returned to Queen Mary's Hospital.

He took his son home at 9.30pm. An hour later he called 999 and said: "He's dead."

Charlie was taken to Queen Mary's and was treated with Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation and a blood transfusion and a head scan revealed that he had fluid around the front of the brain.

The baby was transferred to Kings College Hospital in Camberwell at 3.30am, where an MRI scan revealed bleeding within the skull and abnormalities in the brain.

His ventilator was switched off two days later when he was declared brain stem dead.

Prosecutor Richard Whittam, QC described what happened after the death.

He said: "Charlie was handed to his parents. Gavin Gibbs was heard to whisper 'please forgive me'.

Mr Gibbs denies the boy's murder and also causing grievous bodily harm to the twins in 2008.

The trial continues.


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