SUWON, April 20 (Korea Bizwire) – A man from Suwon who stands accused of child abuse that led to the death of his son is pleading innocent in the wake of medical evidence that suggests his child might have succumbed to shaken baby syndrome, a term used by physicians to refer to a form of child abuse inflicted by violent shaking.
According to the Suwon District Prosecutors’ Office, the father, whose name was withheld, is awaiting the court’s verdict after being accused of shaking his son to death.
The baby died after spending 19 days in the hospital undergoing treatment for injuries suffered in an accidental fall during an ‘airplane’ game, according to the father’s testimony.
Medical experts involved in the case have said the death of the baby could be the result of shaken baby syndrome, citing brain damage and retinal hemorrhage without any bone fracture as evidence.
Shaken baby syndrome, also known as abusive head trauma, is identified as an injury to the skull of a child younger than five years old, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Symptoms of the syndrome often include cerebral and retinal hemorrhages.
The prosecutors arrested the father of the deceased infant on child abuse charges, based on the accusation that while his girlfriend was having a hard time trying to stop the baby from crying, the accused got caught up in the heat of the moment and ended up shaking the baby to death with an extreme level of force.
In a previous court hearing, the accused only confessed to rocking his then 8-month-old son to and fro with force while the baby was lying on his back in a stroller, an action he claims bears no relevance to the death of the child. He went on to deny all accusations made against him related to the death, saying it was an accident he deeply regrets.
During the final hearing which was held Tuesday, the accused wept in court while reading a handwritten letter he wrote to his son.
The prosecutors dismissed the defendant’s plea of innocence, citing opinions of medical experts and the inconsistency in his testimony during the investigation where he first said the baby fell off from a sofa and then claimed that he dropped the baby by accident.
The verdict is scheduled to be handed down early next month.
Hyunsu Yim (firstname.lastname@example.org)