Boy Changed Claim He 'Strangled' Toddler

19 April 2016, 19:03

A young boy who said he "strangled'' toddler Liam Fee on the day he died changed his claim in a subsequent interview, a murder trial has heard.

The youngster, who cannot be named because of his age, initially said the incident happened on Saturday March 22 2014.

But, in a later interview, he said he had "made up'' that part and it had actually happened on a Tuesday.

Liam's mother Rachel Trelfa or Fee, 31, and her civil partner Nyomi Fee, 28, are on trial at the High Court in Livingston, where they deny murdering the toddler and falsely blaming his death on another young boy.

The jury has been shown various pre-recorded interviews with the child they are alleged to have wrongly blamed, which were taken days after Liam's death at a house in Fife.

The trial last week heard the boy told a female police officer and male social worker he had been with the couple and Liam on that day.

He said he "strangled'' Liam - but that the two-year-old was still sitting up and watching television afterwards.

The boy could be seen putting his hand to his face, over his mouth, before telling the interviewers he had used just one hand.

But in a later video played to the jury on day six of the trial, the boy said he "made up'' the part about the incident happening on the Saturday.

"It was Tuesday,'' he told the interviewers.

He was later asked: "Do you understand what happened to Liam? How do you know that?''

The boy replied: "Cos I did it.''

"You did it on the Tuesday?'' the questioners continued.

"Yes,'' the boy replied, adding: "Put my hand over his mouth.''

The jury also heard claims Rachel had been shouting at the boy on the day of Liam's death.

"Can you remember what she was shouting at you about on that Saturday night?'' asked the interviewer.

"It was all my fault,'' the boy replied, adding: "Liam, it was all my fault.''

The court was again closed to the public as the recordings were played to the jurors.

The murder charge alleges the couple assaulted Liam at a house in Fife on various occasions between March 15 and March 22, 2014.

They also face a catalogue of allegations of wilfully ill-treating and neglecting two other young boys over a period of more than two years.

The pair are accused of falsely telling others, including police, that a young boy - one of those they are accused of mistreating - was responsible for Liam's death.

They deny all the charges against them.

The trial, before Judge Lord Burns, continues on Wednesday.