South East Wales

Babysitter Dean Williams jailed for disabling boy

A babysitter who left a four-week-old boy with "catastrophic" injuries and a lifetime of disability has been jailed for three-and-a-half years.

The child was a month old when he was shaken and squeezed while in the care of Dean Williams, 31, of Fernhill, Mountain Ash, Rhondda Cynon Taf.

He pleaded guilty on Friday to three counts of cruelty to a child in 2008.

The boy suffered haemorrhaging to both eyes, broken ribs and permanent brain damage, Merthyr Crown Court heard.

Huw Evans, prosecuting, said: "They were the sorts of catastrophic injuries that experts indicated that one would expect to be seen after a fall downstairs or a car crash.

"They were caused by the significant use of a shaking force."

He told the court that concerns were raised when the baby's mother called the paramedics because of his appearance, and it was they who noticed the bruises on the baby's head.

David Aubrey QC, defending Williams, said that there had been a "momentary" loss of control.

Judge Eleri Rees told Williams: "You have deprived the child of reaching his potential, of leading a normal life, of gaining independence, of enjoying freedom of movement and sight and everything else a child should enjoy.

"He has been left with difficulties, reflected in his learning difficulties and problems with his behaviour. For the child, that is a life sentence."

Williams was also disqualified from working with children.