Ethan Hopson trial: Babysitter did not have 'vicious, sadistic streak', court hears
THE death of baby Ethan Hopson was not caused by a “vicious, sadistic streak” in his babysitter, a court heard.
But the man accused of murdering him later desperately tried to “save himself”, instead of saying what really happened, it was claimed.
Jason Redgrave, 25, of Grimsby, denies the murder of six-month-old Ethan between December 16 and 23. He also denies a charge of manslaughter.
Prosecutor Nicholas Lumley QC told the jury at Hull Crown Court in his closing speech: “Only the hardest hearted of people could not want to turn back the clock to make whatever happened that night not happen, so that Ethan Hopson’s short life could have continued and blossomed.”
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It might be that Redgrave bitterly regretted what happened but that was “all very well”.
Mr Lumley said: “This was no accident, no moment of thoughtlessness. This was deliberate, sustained violence of a kind where his only intention can have been to hurt Ethan seriously..
“His intention, is something only you can decide.
“Juries wrestle with this sort of issue day in, day out.”
Redgrave did not get up thinking “I am going to hurt Ethan tonight,” said Mr Lumley.
“This was not planned in any way, but few are. The intention can be formed in a moment and almost certainly was here. It can be carried out deliberately and then instantly regretted, as almost certainly happened here.
“He was feeling sorry for himself first and others second.”
Mr Lumley said of the injuries: “These things don’t just happen. There must have been a cause for these tragic, fatal injuries. He chose not to explain.
“He knows what he did. Nobody else was there and it was in his power to tell you. He can remember many details of that night.”
But Redgrave could not tell the jury the crucial details that fatally damaged his case and Ethan.
“This is about a defendant seeking to save himself,” claimed Mr Lumley.
“He chose to try to save himself. In his interviews with police, he concealed other crucial information.
“Jason Redgrave, in anger, and quite deliberately, lashed out at that little baby and caused his death, with the only intention of causing him, really serious injury.”
Defence barrister, Stuart Denney QC told the jury: “It’s plain a trauma happened and plainly it happened on this defendant’s watch.”
Redgrave had “no positive case” to put to the court.
“He accepts that something traumatic happened but does not know what,” said Mr Denney.
The jury would have to be sure that the injuries suffered by Ethan were caused by some kind of assault.
“Only one person actually knows and that’s the defendant,” said Mr Denney.
“The defendant says he does not know how those injuries happened.”
The jury would have to decide whether Redgrave was feeling “self pity,” when he gave evidence, as the prosecution claimed or was feeling “real horror,” at what happened.
Mr Denney claimed that the idea of a “deliberate, calculated assault” did not “hold water”.
He claimed: “There is nothing to suggest any vicious, sadistic streak.”
There was no evidence of an intent to cause really serious harm, he claimed.
“This man is not a murderer,” said Mr Denney.
The case continues.