Court told Millie's mum 'a good mother'

Published: 15 Oct 2012 16:39

The mother of murdered toddler Millie Martin was a good mother, according to family GP Dr. Torsten Jentsch.

Millie Martin.

Dungannon Crown Court also heard that the doctor, based at Enniskillen Health Centre, told police that he "did not see any bruising or injuries to Millie" in the week leading up to her death on December 11, 2009.

Millie's 27-year-old mother, Rachael Martin, from Main Street, Kesh, denies wilfully neglecting and allowing her death, while her 33-year-old former partner, Barry McCarney, from Woodview Crescent, Trillick, denies murdering and sexually and physically abusing the child.

Dr. Jentsch said that up to her first birthday in September 2009 there was nothing "exceptional" about Millie and "how she was presented (to his surgery) and how her mother was looking after her".

He agreed with Martin's defence QC John McCrudden that the GP practice notes showed "a profoundly normal and unexceptional history". The GP notes "also indicated that the mother was at all time attentive".

Witnesses have told the court of seeing injuries on Baby Millie, in particular a "blackened ear" and an "egg, or oval shaped bump" in the middle of the 15-month-old toddler's forehead.

"Was there any bruising or marks evident to you, on her face, ears or chest," asked Mr. McCrudden.

"Not that I can remember," the doctor replied.

Later Dr. Jentsch told both the lawyer and trial judge, Mr. Justice Stephens, it was his "observation ..impression" that: "Rachael appeared quite sensible."

Asked earlier "if he found anything that concerned or alarmed him as a GP, you would have made a note of that," he agreed, adding that he might also have "admitted her", repeating he found nothing.

Dr. Jentsch further agreed that Millie's mother had shown "no hesitation" when asked to remove the child's top and he had "found Rachael always helpful where Millie was concerned".

The last time he saw either mother or daughter was, December 9, "the day before she effectively died", after a nurse had asked him to check on a burn to the child's right index finger.

At that time, Dr. Jentsch said "Millie was not a shy .... she came up to me herself and showed me her finger and let me examine and to touch it".

However, "there was nothing in Millie's movements, in her person, in her demeanour or appearance that would have suggested ...that this child was visibly impaired or had effectively no sight".

A leading Home Office pathologist has already told the court that Millie would have been blinded around the time she received a blow to the back of her head, which eventually lead to her death.

Dr. Jentsch told the court the last time he saw her she certainly "was not blind".

Earlier a doctor from the Erne Hospital who examined the burn to Millie's finger also agreed that she had not seen any other injuries to the child.

Dr. Kate McBridge was asked if there was "any bruising to the child's heads, or marks obvious to you," to which she replied: "No."

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