A Victorian baby found unresponsive in his cot after a
burglary, and then died, had more than 30 cuts, bruises and
fractures to his head, a court has heard.
Casey Veal discovered her 11-month-old son Zayden Veal in
blood-stained sheets moments after realising their Bendigo
home had been robbed as they slept.
Pathologist Jacqueline Lee told the Bendigo Magistrates Court
Zayden had a minimum of 25 cuts and bruises to his face.
The injuries were likely caused by either a hand or a blunt
instrument with either a pushing or striking motion, Dr Lee
told the court today.
Zayden's autopsy also found around eight injuries to Zayden's
scalp, including bruising and fractures on the right side of
his head likely caused by blows of severe force.
He had a further seven injuries to his torso including a
broken collarbone and bruising to his chest, back and
shoulder, the court heard.
Dr Lee said Zayden was likely dead by the time Ms Veal found
"Once the injuries that I saw were sustained the child
would've been dead very shortly thereafter," she said.
Dr Lee said Zayden also had a partially broken rib, which had
happened before any injuries caused on the night of the
Harley Hicks, 20, of North Bendigo, has been charged with the
murder of baby Zayden on June 15 last year.
Hicks allegedly entered the home, in the Bendigo suburb of
Long Gully, armed with a baton and stole two wallets and a
pair of sunglasses.
Hicks is charged with aggravated burglary, theft and murder.
Hicks' committal hearing continues.