By Jacob Kagi
A man who admitted killing his infant daughter in the Perth suburb of Ellenbrook after she fell off a change table has been sentenced to seven years in prison.
Paul James Cosgrove, 24, will remain in jail until at least 2020, after he was sentenced today over the death of his seven-month-old daughter Lily in September 2015.
Cosgrove left Lily unattended on the change table to dispose of a used nappy at the family’s home, with the baby falling off and suffering brain injuries.
The court was told he “shook and slapped” his daughter when she became non-responsive, but did not seek further help.
Cosgrove then ignored repeated requests from his wife Emma to take their daughter to hospital.
The child was eventually taken to hospital after his wife returned home, but she died a short time later.
The Supreme Court also heard Cosgrove had previously been warned about leaving his child unattended.
He pleaded guilty to a charge of unlawfully killing the child, on the basis he was criminally negligent by placing her in a position where she could fall, and by failing in his duty of care to obtain medical assistance for her.
“More timely medical assistance may have saved Lily’s life, but there is no guarantee it would have done so,” Justice Lindy Jenkins told the court.
“You have devastated the lives of Lily’s mother and her extended family and friends.
“It was morally and legally wrong to fail to seek care for her … you were the adult and you had a duty to protect her.”
Family criticises sentence
Outside the court, family members of the child described the jail term as “very disappointing”.
“Lily was denied a life from her dad and now we can’t see her smile or watch her grow,” Emma Cosgrove said.
“I will never erase the memory of her on life support and dying in my arms and there being nothing I could do.
“I will never feel as content again as I did when I was bathing, feeding and cuddling her.”
Cosgrove’s sentence was backdated to last year, meaning he will be eligible for parole after five years in custody.
This post originally appeared on ABC News.
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