Aisling Brady McCarthy: Massachusetts; Aftermath 3; Irish Examiner reporter John Breslin describes how the prosecution case "based on doctor's testimony" was "riddled with holes."... "The Massachusetts State Police report, based on Dr Newton’s diagnosis, concluded: “Abusive head trauma includes injuries caused by violent shaking either by directly striking the head or causing the head to strike another object or surface.” There was “no other medical explanation for Rehma’s injuries or death”, Dr Newton reported." (Must Read. HL);
"Aisling Brady McCarthy case: Prosecution case based on doctor’s
testimony was riddled with holes," by reporter John Breslin, published
on September 2, 2015, by the Irish Examiner.
SUB-HEADING :"Medical evidence indicated that baby
Rehma Sabir was malnourished and some of her injuries happened when she
was with her parents in the Middle East, yet one doctor’s report saw the
case against Aisling Brady McCarthy drag on, writes John Breslin."
"An expert on child deaths and injuries at the hospital was, and is,
Dr Alice Newton. She was called in to give her opinion both before and
after baby Rehma died. Dr Newton had no doubts as to what happened.
Rehma was the victim of a violent assault, she had a severe head injury.
The Massachusetts State Police report, based on Dr Newton’s
diagnosis, concluded: “Abusive head trauma includes injuries caused by
violent shaking either by directly striking the head or causing the head
to strike another object or surface.” There was “no other medical
explanation for Rehma’s injuries or death”, Dr Newton reported. That
same report included details of blood stains discovered by police
officers, on a baby wipe, a blanket, and a pillow. There were other
injuries, notably to the child’s back. A neighbour reported hearing
“extreme” crying. There was damage to a wall, likely caused by the
baby-changing table being knocked against it.
Someone, it was concluded in meetings directly after the baby was
brought to hospital, was responsible for the girl’s fatal
injuries.........The narrative was clear — a crazy illegal Irish nanny
had beaten a child to death.........What happened was that McCarthy
Brady had a friend who knew somebody
in the law offices of Todd and Weld, a firm dealing mostly with
corporate clients but with a sideline in criminal defence. Melinda
Thompson got the file and immediately, after one quick run-through, saw
holes big enough to drive a bus through. Those injuries to Rehma’s back —
they happened weeks before the day
she was fatally injured. Brady McCarthy was nowhere near the child when
they occurred. In fact, at the time Rehma was travelling through the
Middle East with her parents who are from Pakistan. The damage to the
wall? Easily caused by normal wear and tear. The
blood stains found could not be linked to the day Rehma was fatally
injured. Rehma’s head, or any other part of her body, was not knocked
against anything. That neighbour has admitted never having to care for a
child for any
length of time and the crying that she heard occurred hours before the
alarm was raised and emergency services called. Then came the doctor
reports, including one from late the previous year that concluded Rehma
was a malnourished child. But, prosecutors continued to argue, she was
violently shaken, causing blunt force trauma to her brain. Thompson and
her team of lawyers levelled a double barrel against the
prosecution — that there is no such thing as shaken baby syndrome and,
even if there was, Dr Newton’s diagnosis was rushed and wrong. They also
cited other cases where similar prosecutions, where Dr Newton was the
key witness, were dropped. Geoffrey Wilson, in 2010, was accused of
shaking to death his six-month-old baby. The prosecution case rested
largely on Dr Newton’s conclusions, which
she came to just hours after the baby was brought to hospital. The
charges were dropped after it was found the son had a rare genetic
defect that may have played a role in his death. The medical examiners
changed the manner of death from homicide to “cannot be determined”.
Brady McCarthy’s lawyers tried to have Dr Newton’s testimony excluded
from the expected trial, arguing she failed to review Rehma’s medical
history, including the fact she was malnourished. Dr Newton, at a
hearing before Judge Maureen Hogan in Middlesex
County Superior Court, said she and others conducted a careful review
and that the child died from “a major traumatic injury”. That hearing
was last September and even then it was becoming pretty clear there were
major problems with the prosecution case."
Dear Reader. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog. We are following this case. I
have added a search box for content in this blog which now encompasses
several thousand posts. The search box is located near the bottom of
the screen just above the list of links. I am confident that this
powerful search tool provided by "Blogger" will help our readers and
myself get more out of the site.
Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible
years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr.
Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of
Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic"
section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It
can be found at: http://www.thestar.com/topic/charlessmith Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at: http://smithforensic.blogspot.ca/2013/12/the-charles-smith-award-presented-to_28.html I look forward to hearing from readers at:
My interest in forensic pathology began with my Toronto Star investigative reporting into once famed since disgraced former doctor Charles Smith. I began this Blog after retiring from the Star in 2006 in order to follow the aftermath into the independent Goudge inquiry into many of Smith's cases. I have now begun to focus on cases involving flawed forensic science no matter where they occur (the recent Amanda Knox prosecution in Italy, for example) and am fascinated by the interest in the Blog from people in countries throughout the world. In another development, my interest in "junk science" "pseudo-experts" and the miscarriages of justice they all too often cause has drawn me deeply into the on-going U.S. death penalty debate where so many troubling cases involve issues relating to DNA and other developments in the world of forensic science. For all of this I rely on my experience as a reporter at the Toronto Star, my work as a lawyer in Ontario's criminal courts, and my abhorrence of injustice. Please send cases and developments which may be of interest to this Blog to firstname.lastname@example.org. Read on! Harold Levy.