Father found guilty of murder


A father who caused fatal injuries to his 18-month-old adopted daughter has been convicted of her murder.

Matthew Scully-Hicks, 31, had denied killing Elsie Scully-Hicks in May 2016 but was found guilty yesterday (6 November) by a jury at Cardiff Crown Court.

The trial heard how Scully-Hicks told the 999 call operator that he was changing Elsie's nappy and found her "limp and floppy" on the floor. She was rushed to hospital but died four days later as a result of her injuries.

A medical examination following her death revealed that Elsie had suffered injuries to her brain and eyes which experts considered to be consistent with being gripped and violently shaken.

The examination also revealed Elsie had suffered fractures to her ribs, thigh and the base of her skull.

Lisa McCarthy, from the CPS, said: "Elsie suffered serious injuries at the hands of her adoptive father and these ultimately caused her death. This was a tragic case and our thoughts and sympathies are with Elsie's loved ones.

"The evidence put forward by the CPS proved that Matthew Scully-Hicks was not only responsible for those injuries, but that he intended to seriously harm her.

"The prosecution built a case through careful and detailed analysis of witness accounts, medical evidence and the circumstances surrounding Elsie's death. This resulted in the guilty verdict returned by the jury."

Matthew Scully-Hicks was sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court today to life imprisonment. The Judge ordered him to serve a minimum of 18 years' imprisonment.


  • Lisa McCarthy is a Senior Crown Prosecutor with CPS Cymru-Wales