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2 August 2018, 17:19
A father who shook his infant son in temper, causing fatal brain injuries, has been jailed for six years.
Ricky Walker, 27, also caused the head of six-month-old Kayden Walker to collide with a hard surface before dialling 999 when he became lifeless.
Walker, who claimed his son became unresponsive after a hoodie slipped over his face, was convicted of manslaughter at Birmingham Crown Court on Wednesday, but cleared of murder and child cruelty.
Kayden went into cardiac arrest at his home in Walnut Close, Bilston, West Midlands, on June 12 2016, and was pronounced dead in hospital about an hour later.
Medical evidence presented at Walker's trial revealed a "triad" of findings, pointing towards a shaking episode, including restriction of blood flow to the brain.
Passing sentence on Walker on Thursday, High Court judge Mr Justice Morris said: "The death of a child is always distressing and shocking. The thoughts of a life not lived stay with us all.
"Ricky Walker accepts that he did shake Kayden, but only in an effort to revive his son, who he claimed had unaccountably gone floppy due to a blanket covering his face.
"That account was not true. What happened was that Ricky Walker, left alone in the flat with a teething, niggly infant, had momentarily lost his temper and forcibly shaken Kayden."
Accepting that Walker had not intended to cause death or serious harm, the judge added: "You shook him in temper and in doing so intended to cause him some harm, but you did not intend the terrible consequences of your actions."
Offering mitigation before sentence, defence QC Rachel Brand submitted that Walker had been a loving father who was normally a gentle and passive man.
The lawyer told the court: "It is a case of tragic unintended consequences, a loss of normal composure by a father who 99.9% of the time was utterly loving and caring.
"One can imagine he was tired and under pressure."
Kayden's mother, Laura Davies, was convicted of allowing his death and will be sentenced on September 5.