Dad, 42, 'shook baby daughter to death when she wouldn't stop crying'

Andy Wells
·Freelance Writer
·2 min read
Philip Peace is accused of killing his five-month-old daughter Summer. (SWNS)
Philip Peace is accused of killing his five-month-old daughter Summer. (SWNS)

A father who was having a “difficult afternoon” looking after his five-month-old daughter murdered her by violently shaking her to death, a court has heard.

Philip Peace, 42, is accused of killing baby daughter Summer at their family home in Dudley, West Midlands, in September 2017.

He dialled 999 when the youngster collapsed and paramedics arrived at the address to find her "limp, unresponsive and struggling to breathe".

Summer was rushed to Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley on 8 September 2017, and died around 24 hours later.

Philip Peace is on trial at Birmingham Crown Court. (SWNS)
Philip Peace is on trial at Birmingham Crown Court. (SWNS)

A court heard she had suffered a fatal brain injury, 11 broken ribs, a fractured sternum and was bleeding from the eye and spinal cord.

Peace told doctors that Summer had started to cry and was "inconsolable" a couple of hours before she collapsed – but he had only rocked her and bounced her on his knee.

However several medical experts concluded she died from a "non-accidental injury" caused by being excessively shaken and potential impact with a cushion, jurors were told.

On Monday Peace went on trial accused of murder and an alternative charge of manslaughter at Birmingham Crown Court.

The court heard Summer's brain injuries were caused by "excessive forwards and backwards moving of her head and brain – a whiplash-style injury”.

The court was told Summer also suffered "significant bleeding" in the retinal area of the eye as well as her optic nerve.

Philip Peace is on trial accused of murder and an alternative charge of manslaughter. (SWNS)
Philip Peace is on trial accused of murder and an alternative charge of manslaughter. (SWNS)

Her broken ribs were said to have been caused by shaking or "by someone with their hands wrapped around her chest squeezing in all directions."

Prosecutor Andrew Smith said: “All of this bleeding around the eye was fresh and consistent with having been caused at the time of her collapse.

“It is consistent with being caused by movement head traumas such as shaking.

“The degree of force would be obviously greater than that encountered in daily life.”

Peace denies the charges and the trial, which is expected to last six to eight weeks, continues.

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