Intended for healthcare professionals


Court of Appeal issues guidance on shaken baby syndrome

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 21 June 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c3318
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

    The Court of Appeal of England and Wales has issued new guidance on how judges and juries should deal with expert evidence in shaken baby cases, to ensure that verdicts are reached on a “logically justifiable” basis.

    If there is a realistic prospect of an unknown cause for the injuries, judges must remind the jury of this possibility in their summing up, the judges said. And juries must be told how to approach the issue of conflicting medical evidence—including being asked to decide, if the issue arises, whether the witness has assumed the role of an advocate or strayed outside his or her area of expertise.

    Lord Justice Moses gave the guidance on behalf of himself and three other judges in a …

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