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Mother accused of murdering her three-year-old son says she caned him because Bible allows it, court hears | UK News

A mother accused of murdering her three-year-old son has claimed she used a bamboo cane to beat him because the Bible told her she could “chastise her child”, a court has heard.

Christina Robinson, 30, called the emergency services to her home in Bracken Court, Durham, in November 2022 and claimed Dwelaniyah had gone limp while eating a cheese bun.

But Richard Wright KC, prosecuting, told Newcastle Crown Court the boy had suffered a serious, fatal head injury after being shaken violently by his mother.

The prosecution said the child’s legs were heavily bandaged, hiding burns which covered up to 20% of his body and would have caused excruciating pain for several weeks prior to his death, having been forcibly and deliberately scalded in the bath.

Jurors were shown paramedics’ body-worn footage as they tried to save the boy at the house, where Robinson said the youngster had hurt himself in the shower but she had not thought he needed hospital treatment.

Neighbours heard whimpering at night but did not know the source of the sound, the prosecution said.

Dwelaniyah, whose heart had stopped beating, was taken to hospital but could not be saved.

Bruises on his body showed he had been hit by a cylindrical object and tests on a bamboo cane found in the house showed traces of his blood and skin, the court heard.

Mr Wright told jurors: “The defendant admits that she hit him with a weapon but says that she was allowed to do so because the Bible tells her that she should chastise her child.”

A post-mortem revealed he had been the victim of a series of assaults and had sustained several non-accidental injuries, the jury was told.

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The prosecutor said: “The defendant now asserts that beating a child with a cane so that she drew blood was consistent with her being an adherent of the teachings of the Bible.”

Robinson denies murdering Dwelaniyah and child cruelty.

The case was adjourned to Wednesday.

Man arrested after reports a dog bit a three-year-old girl in the face in Kirkby | UK News

A man has been arrested and a dog seized after reports a three-year-old girl was bitten in the face, police have said.

Merseyside officers were called to Newtown Gardens, outside the Market Tavern pub, in Kirkby, northeast of Liverpool, on Saturday afternoon following a report a dog had attacked a child.

The toddler was taken to hospital for treatment of her injuries, thought to be serious but not life-threatening.

Police attended and seized the dog, which will be examined in order to determine the breed.

A 31-year-old man from Ormskirk has been arrested on suspicion of affray and having a dog dangerously out of control in a public place.

He has been taken into custody to be questioned.

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Chief Inspector Jim Wilde said: “This was a horrific attack which has left a young girl receiving hospital treatment for significant injuries to her face.

“I want to reassure people that she is currently receiving the best possible care and treatment for her injuries at Alder Hey, and we hope she makes a speedy recovery.

“We seized the dog at the scene, which will now be humanely destroyed, and extensive efforts are now under way to establish exactly what happened.”

Police said the area was busy at the time and, while they have spoken to a number of witnesses, they are still appealing for more to come forward.

Father dies after Swansea house fire which also killed his three-year-old son | UK News

A father has died following a house fire in Swansea, police have said, which also killed his three-year-old son.

Naemat Lawa Esmael, 51, passed away on Monday morning, South Wales Police said in a statement.

His three-year-old son Muhammed Esmael died at the scene of the blaze in the West Cross area of the city on Saturday.

Police were called to the fire on Gonhil at around 1.20pm on Saturday.

Detective Inspector Carl Price said: “Our thoughts remain with the family, friends and the local community following this tragic incident.

“We are working alongside the fire service to establish the cause of the fire.”

Mr Esmael had been taken to Morriston Hospital and was said to be in a serious condition after the fire.

Of the other people in the house at the time, a 13-year-old girl and a 39-year-old woman suffered smoke inhalation.

Police have thanked members of the community who helped at the scene of the fire and those who have come forward with information.

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The fire was contained to one property and its cause is not yet known, police confirmed.

Leader of Swansea Council, Councillor Rob Stewart, described the “tragic fire” as “very sad news”.

“Our thoughts, condolences and sympathies are with the family and friends at this very difficult time,” he added.

An online fundraising page has raised around £15,000 to support the family.