Warick Ian Broadhurst
A jury at the High Court in Auckland has found a man not guilty of the murder of his two-year-old step daughter but guilty of her manslaughter.
Warick Broadhurst was charged with murdering his stepdaughter Arwen Fletcher.
Arwen was 23 months old when she died after injuries suffered at her home in Waiuku, 64km south of Auckland, on March 15, 2006.
The crown alleged Arwen died after Broadhurst assaulted her in some way. Broadhurst's lawyer Paul Borich said she died from a freakish and tragic accident.
Lloyd Denmark was giving evidence today, going over medical details from the post-mortem examination.
Though there was no external sign of injuries on Arwen beyond an injury to her lower lip, Dr Denmark said further examination showed she had a lengthy fracture to her skull.
When asked by Mr Borich whether it was possible the girl died from a fall of about her height, Dr Denmark said he was confident it was "just short of impossible" that she could have died that way.
He said it was likely that Arwen's head probably came into contact with a slightly padded surface which was firm underneath. The padded surface would have explained why there were so few external injuries.
Broadhurst had taken Arwen to a Waiuku medical centre at 8pm on March 15, 2006 with serious injuries after she had seemed fine a few hours earlier.
She was taken to Middlemore Hospital and later to Starship Hospital, where she died two days later.
The court was earlier told Broadhurst said to the Waiuku doctor, police and Starship Hospital staff that Arwen fell in the bathroom shortly after being washed.
OFFENCES / CONVICTIONS
|Event Date||Event||Court Location||Offence Type||Offence Date||Committed While||Sentence Imposed|
|24-4-2008||Sentencing||High Court Auckland||Manslaughter||15-3-2006||7 Years, 6 Months, Imprisonment||▼|