Mum, 33, battered her IVF baby to death after spending years trying to conceive

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A MUM who battered her IVF baby daughter to death after spending years trying to conceive has been jailed for six years.

Shalina Padmanabha abused Shagun for three months after the premature baby spent her first four and a half months of life in hospital.

Shalina Padmanabha has been jailed for six years for manslaughter
Padmanabha abused IVF daughter Shagun, who suffered fatal head injuries

The seven-month-old girl suffered fatal head injuries from either Padmanabha hitting her or bashing her head against a hard surface.

She was rushed to Whipps Cross Hospital in Leytonstone, East London, but later died from her injuries in the early hours of 15 August 2017.

India-born Padmanabha still maintains her innocence but jailing her for six years yesterday, Mrs Justice McGowan said: “You had, in my experience, an unprecedented amount of care and intervention.

“I accept entirely that you are devastated by the loss of your child.

“You were carrying out acts of assault against this baby – or knew, no doubt, almost immediately after an incident occurred that you had done something you shouldn’t.

“It is entirely wrong to say you show remorse and even now you do not accept responsibility.”

Shagun had suffered an 8cm and 11cm fracture to the skull as well as injuries to the legs.

You were carrying out acts of assault against this baby – or knew, no doubt, almost immediately after an incident occurred that you had done something you shouldn’t


Justice McGowan

In the post mortem, doctors found a number of older healing injuries including new and healing fractures to the skull, cracked ribs and bleeding behind the eyes.

The injuries were consistent with the baby being shaken, squeezed by the ribs and having her left leg pulled and twisted.

Jurors were told some of the injuries dated as far back as three months, showing the baby had been abused for almost half her life.

ABUSED

A jury had cleared Padmanabha of murder but convicted her of manslaughter and of cruelty against a person under 16 after a trial at Inner London Crown Court.

Tracey Ayling, QC, prosecuting, told the court: “That scan revealed she had died as a result of catastrophic injuries to her head.

“It is the Crown’s case that the defendant, her mother, inflicted those injuries.”

SHAKEN

During the trial Padmanabha claimed she did not know what caused her daughter to collapse.

Following her arrest she told police officers she simply had a “very strong” and “wriggly” baby.

She had spent several years trying to conceive with her husband before successfully giving birth to her daughter in February 2016 following IVF.

Shagun was suffering medical issues which required her to remain in the hospital for four and a half months.

After she was discharged, she needed to be fed a specialist diet via a tube, had severe eczema and a small hole in her head.


She also required several surgeries for her health issues, and a number of health support staff were tasked with monitoring her progress.

Caroline Cranberry, QC, defending, said university educated Padmanabha’s jail time will be isolated and lonely.

Padmanabha, of Buckhurst Hill, Essex was convicted of manslaughter and cruelty against a person under 16 and jailed for six years at the Old Bailey.


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