Father guilty of murdering his eight-week-old baby daughter
A father has been found guilty of murdering his baby daughter at their home in Bedfordshire in June last year.
Kevin Eves, 37, was convicted of killing eight-week-old Harper Denton by a jury at the Central Criminal Court in London today.
Paramedics were called to the family’s home in Wixams on the morning of 12 June 2018, after Harper’s mother, Cherinea Denton, called 999, saying her baby wasn’t breathing. Harper was rushed to hospital in cardiac arrest, but a specialist paediatric team was unable to save her.
Detailed examinations carried out by specialist clinicians following Harper’s death identified multiple injuries on her body including a skull fracture, bruising to her face and scalp, bleeding in the retinas of her eyes, damage to her mouth, and fractures to her ribs, limbs and feet.
The experts concluded that the injuries, many of them caused by the use of excessive force, were inflicted in the weeks and days leading up to Harper’s death, with some being caused just hours before she died.
A forensic pathologist, who conducted the post mortem and reviewed reports from all the medical specialists, concluded that whilst the cause of death was unascertained, Harper did not die of natural causes, but most likely as a result of being smothered by someone. This conclusion was supported by a second Home Office forensic pathologist.
During the trial, the court heard how Eves had previously been convicted for causing life-threatening injuries to another child. In 2006, he was jailed after his former girlfriend’s two-year-old child was found to have head injuries and broken bones inflicted by Eves while the boy was in his care.
Senior District Crown Prosecutor Peter Burt for the CPS said: “The strength of the medical and forensic evidence we presented in this case left the jury in no doubt that Eves was responsible for his daughter’s death.
“Baby Harper’s life was cruelly cut short by someone she was totally dependent on. The extent of her injuries was shocking, and it’s deeply upsetting to know the distress and pain she would have experienced each time her father inflicted these injuries on her.”
Peter added: “Our thoughts are with Harper’s mother, who has been denied the chance to see her daughter grow up.”
Eves will be sentenced tomorrow (6 November 2019) at the Central Criminal Court.
Notes to editors
- Peter Burt is a Senior District Crown Prosecutor for CPS Thames and Chiltern
- Kevin Eves (DOB: 3/5/1982) was convicted of murder on 5 November 2019 at the Central Criminal Court in London