Staff horrified by lifeless baby
Staff horrified by lifeless baby

Staff from the Fortescue Roadhouse have described the horrific moment when a man entered carrying a dead baby boy, who he is now accused of murdering.

Mervyn Kenneth Douglas Bell has pleaded not guilty to murdering and sexually assaulting the baby after taking him from Broome on March 19, 2013.

The 10-month-old baby had suffered horrific injuries from head to toe, including a broken arm and leg and burns on his feet, legs and body.

The boy also had severe injuries to his genitals and anus.

Mr Bell is accused of intending to kill the baby and inflicting injuries on the child over a 15-hour period before he sped into the Fortescue River Road House with the boy's lifeless body in his arms.

Amanda Black, who had worked at the roadhouse for two years, this morning described the moment when Mr Bell burst through the door carrying the lifeless infant.

Ms Black described how Mr Bell had placed the baby on a table, while calling out his name and began to attempt resuscitation.

She said the baby was naked and looked wet.

But Paramedic Gary Harris, who was called from a nearby minesite to assist, said when he arrived 25 minutes later the baby was dry - and apparently already dead.

When Mr Harris asked Mr Bell what had happened he said: "He went down under the water once, and came up like this."

Prosecutor Amanda Forrester had earlier said Mr Bell told police that the baby had fallen from the car and fallen into the Fortescue River.

Ms Forrester said Mr Bell had lied to police and shown a complete lack of candour, but "emphatically denied" killing the baby.

Mr Harris said after putting the child in an ambulance, with Mr Bell in the front, he saw various wounds on the child's legs and arm.

A still of the CCTV footage of the baby being attended to by passers-by and paramedics was shown in court.

Prosecutors allege Mr Bell was involved in a violent confrontation with the child's mother in the hours leading to the boy's disappearance.

A neighbour who witnessed the boy's mother allegedly being beaten up by Mr Bell said she had also feared for her safety after he drove his four-wheel-drive into her driveway at speed.

Having found the mother beaten and naked on a verge outside her house, Tracy Gilchrist covered her with a bedsheet before she saw the car coming towards her.

"I ran to my front door, because I thought I was going to be hit," Ms Gilchrist said.

Friends who had been with Mr Bell and the child's mother on the night said they had been arguing about alleged infidelity, before the stoush became violent.

The trial continues.

The West Australian

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