Mother who killed her baby son in Northamptonshire given suspended jail sentence

Birmingham Crown Court
Birmingham Crown Court

A woman who was responsible for fatal head injuries suffered by her four-month-old son at her Northamptonshire home has received a suspended jail sentence.

Eloise Burton-Cope, now of Milton Keynes, appeared at Birmingham Crown Court for sentencing today after pleading guilty to manslaughter by reason of lack of intent.

Baby Leon died on March 31 last year as a result of head injuries sustained at his home in south Northamptonshire.

The court heard her son had made a “strange noise” and she had shaken him. As a result, Leon suffered a fractured skull and brain damage. He died in hospital two days later.

Jane Humphryes QC, mitigating, said Burton-Cope had been suffering from depression and sought help from medical professionals but became “lost in a bureaucratic system of funding”.

Ms Humphryes said: “Her devastation is total and she will certainly never overcome that.

“She did seek help from medical professionals. She was lost in a bureaucratic system short of funding. She was passed from department to department, each one thinking the other was looking after her. There was no proper plan.”

Judge Charles Haddon-Cave, sentencing said it was “unfortunate” that her medical condition was not recognised at the time but “no-one is to blame”, adding “it is very easy to be wise after the event”.

Burton-Cope was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years.