Northern Ireland

Fatally injured baby girl named as Cárágh Walsh

Craigavon courthouse
Image caption The accused man's relatives wept at Craigavon Magistrates' Court as a defence lawyer outlined the case

A baby girl who died in hospital on Friday from injuries has been named.

Three-month-old Cárágh Walsh had been critically ill since she was brought to the Royal Victoria Hospital on Wednesday from a house in west Belfast.

The girl's father, Christopher O'Neill, 23, of Glasvey Park in Twinbrook, appeared in court on Friday charged with causing her grievous bodily harm.

A police spokesman said detectives would be consulting with the Public Prosecution Service about the case.

He said a post-mortem examination would take place in the coming days.

Earlier on Friday, family members wept as details of the case were outlined at Craigavon Magistrates' Court.

A defence lawyer told the court that relatives on both sides of his family had made clear their support.


He said Mr O'Neill had been left alone with the baby girl on Wednesday morning.

The lawyer said the accused had found the child in some sort of medical distress and had "taken actions" to try to help her.

The court heard that Mr O'Neill later admitted to hospital staff that these actions had included shaking the little girl.

It was following this admission that the police were called and he was arrested.

The defence lawyer said that, during two days of questioning, Mr O'Neill had insisted his actions had seemed reasonable in the circumstances.

He said there was no eyewitness and the case would hinge on medical opinion that has yet to be provided.

Granting bail despite police objections, the judge said that Mr O'Neill had already been granted compassionate bail to visit his daughter in hospital.

The judge added that the original charge of grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent had been reduced to GBH.

Mr O'Neill is to appear in court again in Lisburn, County Antrim, on 17 February.