Doncaster man found guilty of manslaughter of girlfriend's baby


James Larkin has today been found guilty of manslaughter, perverting the course of justice and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

His girlfriend Laura Ostle, the baby's mother, has been found guilty of perverting the course of justice and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Larkin shook the baby so violently he caused him irreversible brain injury at their home on 16 September 2014.

Julian Briggs, Senior Crown Prosecutor in the Complex Casework Unit, CPS Yorkshire and Humberside, said: "This was an absolutely tragic case. Baby Christopher was born into the care of two deeply inadequate individuals. His mother's aggressive and abusive relationship with her boyfriend, Larkin, who was not the child's father, led him to snap. Christopher was shaken so violently by James Larkin that he suffered unsurvivable brain injury, and died in hospital the next day. He was just eleven and a half weeks old.

"Both defendants told lies to the police in an effort to cover up the obvious truth that Larkin's actions that morning killed Christopher. In the immediate aftermath and in the days that followed, both were thinking only of saving themselves. They were not thinking of the best interests of the tiny newborn. Unbelievably, Laura Ostle even texted Larkin from the ambulance taking the dying child to hospital in order to align their accounts.

"Nothing will ever be the same for Christopher's wider family. I hope that these verdicts are of some comfort to them in their grief."