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Erith child murder trial: Toddler Rhys Lawrie allegedly killed by mum's teenage boyfriend Cameron Rose had 'bruising to the brain'
A DOCTOR has told how bruising to the brain of a three-year-old boy allegedly murdered by his mother's teenage lover most likely occured shortly before he died.
Dr Safa Al-Saraj, a consultant neuro-pathologist at King's College Hospital, gave evidence at the Old Bailey in the trial of Cameron Rose, 18, who is accused of murdering his girlfriend's son Rhys Lawrie at her flat in Columbus Square, Erith, last year.
Dr Al-Saraj told the court he saw bruising and contusions to both frontal lobes of the toddler's brain when he examined them on February 15 this year, nearly one month after Rhys's death on January 21.
He said: "I think these changes related to a recent episode of head injury though it is very difficult for me based on brain examination only."
But the doctor added he was sure some sort of traumatic impact had occured "shortly before the child's death."
Paramedics found Rhys with serious head injuries at the home of his mother, army medic Sadie Henry, 28, and took him to Darent Valley Hospital where he died after attempts to revive him failed.
The jury of seven women and five men had previously heard how epileptic Rhys came away with bruises on two previous occasions he was left with Rose in December 2010 and January 2011.
On January 17 he sustained head injuries which Rose, then 16, blamed on a fall from a work surface after Rhys had a seizure.
Dr Al-Saraj noted head injuries to Rhys "of a few days’ duration" in his evidence.
When questioned by defence counsel Rosina Pottage, he accepted the "possibility" they may have been caused by an "unprotected fall with violence".
Rose denies murder and two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
The trial continues.