Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Liam Fee murder: Stamp may have caused fatal heart injury

Liam Fee Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Two-year-old Liam Fee died in March 2014

The Liam Fee murder trial has heard it would be possible for a "single stamp" from another child to have caused the injury that killed the toddler.

An abdomen stamp which forced blood to burst a hole in his heart could have been administered by a child or adult, the High Court at Livingston heard.

Nyomi Fee, 29, and Rachel Fee, 32, deny murdering Rachel's son Liam, two, in a house near Glenrothes on 22 March 2014.

The couple also deny harming two other children.

Liam's mother Rachel Fee and her civil partner Nyomi Fee, originally from Ryton, Tyne and Wear, further deny attempting to defeat the ends of justice by blaming the killing on another child.

Broken bones

Pathologist Dr Paul French told the jury that a heart injury was the most likely cause of death.

Mark Stewart, defending Nyomi Fee, asked him if the force of being stamped on in a "sudden sharp manner" would generate the compressive effect that would lead to this heart injury. He replied: "That is one possibility, yes."

Mr Stewart said: "That stamp would be likely to be applied to the abdomen?" "Yes."

"That event, if it occurred, would be capable of being executed by a single person?" "Yes, that is possible."

"And that single person might have been a four stone child?" "Yes, that is possible."

The jury also heard that Liam had severe bruising to his private parts consistent with being sexually groped roughly before he died.

Injuries in and around his mouth and nose could have been linked with someone putting their hand over his mouth and smothering him.

The jury also heard that bones in his upper arm and thigh which had been broken on two separate occasions - just prior to death and three to six days previously - could also have been the result of a stamping motion.

The trial before Lord Burns continues.

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