Hampshire mother accused of murder tells court she found her baby 'blue' after returning from smoking cannabis joint

A WOMAN from Hampshire who stands accused of murder has said her baby boy turned ‘blue’ while she was outside her flat smoking cannabis.

Tuesday, 6th July 2021, 8:36 pm
Updated Tuesday, 6th July 2021, 9:15 pm

Chelsea Cuthbertson, 28, denies the murder of six-week-old Malakai Watts, who was rushed to hospital from the family’s two-bedroom flat in Hythe on February 2 in 2019.

The baby was put in a medically induced coma at a paediatric intensive care unit at Southampton General Hospital, but a decision was taken to turn off his life support four days later and he died on February 6.

Sally Howes QC, prosecuting, has told Winchester Crown Court that a post-mortem examination showed that Malakai died of a traumatic head injury – likely to have been caused by shaking, possibly with an impact.

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The trial at Winchester Crown Court over the death of six-week-old Malakai Watts continues. Picture: Solent News & Photo Agency UK
The trial at Winchester Crown Court over the death of six-week-old Malakai Watts continues. Picture: Solent News & Photo Agency UK

The baby also suffered eight rib fractures, with one having been suffered on an earlier occasion than the other seven, the court has heard.

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Cuthbertson said her partner Del Wattswoke her up in the early hours of February 2 as he was concerned for the baby.

The 26-year-old added that Malakai was ‘whingeing’ at night-time and she would use her phone to play lullabies to help get him to sleep.

She said: ‘Del woke me up about Malakai’s breathing, that he was breathing fast, we were in bed, I checked him and he was fine.’

The defendant said that she awoke again at about 4.30am to feed Malakai but she did not hear Mr Watts getting up to go to work at about 7.15am.

She said that at 9am she went outside for about 15 minutes during which she smoked a joint and looked at Facebook on her phone.

Cuthbertson said that when she went back into the house and readied some baby milk for Malakai, before entering the child’s bedroom and saw that her son had turned ‘blue’.

She said: ‘I saw Malakai straight away, he was blue. I dialled 999 straight away.’

The baby’s mother said that she then carried out CPR chest compressions while on the 999 call, and a paramedic arrived who took over before Malakai was taken to hospital.

She said: ‘I was distraught, I have never seen a baby blue before.’

Cuthbertson added that the CPR felt like it lasted for a ‘lifetime’.

When asked if she knew what was wrong with Malakai or what had happened to him, she replied: ‘No’.

Cuthbertson has denied deliberately harming Malakai or shaking him.

The trial continues.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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