Star Hobson was ‘punched or slapped’ on the face as court shown photos of bruising – murder trial

Toddler Star Hobson suffered bruising to her face that was likely to have been caused by “slaps or punches”, a court heard today.

Star’s mother Frankie Smith, 20, and her partner Savannah Brockhill, 28, are currently on trial for murder following the death of the 16-month old toddler on September 22, 2020, in a flat in Keighley.

Giving evidence at Bradford Crown Court, forensic pathologist Dr Christopher Johnson said photos of Star’s bruising were indicative of “non-accidental, inflicted injuries”.

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He said bruising to her face was “likely” caused by “blows to the face with slaps or punches, something like that”.

Another photograph, dated September 12, 2020, appeared to show Star asleep with a swollen upper lip, said Dr Johnson.

The court was told Miss Smith said she had seen Star fall onto a gearstick while on a Facetime call with Miss Brockhill.

Dr Johnson said the swollen lip was “likely to be a blow struck to this region”.

Yesterday the court heard Star suffered a broken leg caused by “very considerable force” around two to four weeks before her death.

Consultant pathologist Professor David Mangham, an expert in bone fractures, said Star had suffered fractures to her skull, her right tibia, and two ribs.

He said the injuries had happened prior to her death.

The broken leg had occurred between two and four weeks before Star’s death, he told the court.

A ‘re-fracture’ of the tibia (shin) bone had occurred between three and seven days before Star had died.

He said her skull had been fractured five to 10 days before death and the ribs had been broken between two and four weeks before her death.

Miss Smith, of Halifax Road, Keighley, and Miss Brockhill, of Ashbourne Road, Bradford , are both charged with Star’s murder and causing or allowing the death of a child.

They deny both charges and the trial, which is due to last six weeks, continues.

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YorkshireLive – Halifax