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Last Updated: Monday, 3 July 2006, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
Baby died after 'walking lessons'
Ceri Thomas (l) and Sarah Scott
The parents told the hearing they were teaching their baby to walk
A 14-week-old baby suffered 40 broken bones because her parents were teaching her to walk, an inquest has heard.

Chloe Thomas had fractures to her skull, wrists, ribs, legs and fingers when she died in 2003, Cardiff Coroner's Court was told.

Father Ceri Thomas, 23, was cleared in January of murdering Chloe, but was jailed after he admitted cruelty.

Mother Sarah Scott, 19, pleaded guilty to the same charge. The hearing is expected to last four days.

Chloe died after she stopped breathing at their home in Bridgend, south Wales.

Thomas, from Bridgend, was jailed for three months over the cruelty charges and Scott, from Cardiff was given a three-year community rehabilitation order.

The court heard the pair began walking Chloe when she was just 12 weeks old.

Chloe seemed very weak and quiet - she was vacant and not laughing like other children of her age
Dr Malarmagal Yoganatham

Scott's aunt Sian Casey said: "I was looking after Chloe when I saw bruises on her stomach and chest. I also noticed that she had bruises on the palm of her hands and her little finger.

"She had identical bruises on the other hand and I asked Sarah how she got them. She just laughed at me and said she had been walking Chloe and had been told to do so by social services."

Mrs Casey called a health visitor because she was so concerned about the bruises.

The inquest heard health visitor Anne Powell later took Chloe to GP Malarmagal Yoganatham for a check-up.

Dr Yoganatham told the inquest: "Chloe seemed very weak and quiet. She was vacant and not laughing like other children of her age.

"I told the health visitor we needed to keep an eye on her but I saw no sign of real pain and no sign that she had suffered 40 fractures."

Chloe, an only child, died at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff in April 2003.

The parents have now split up.

The hearing continues.




SEE ALSO
No prison for baby death cruelty
20 Feb 06 |  South East Wales
Father avoids baby murder charge
30 Jan 06 |  South East Wales

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