A man accused of endangering a child’s life by placing her into a tumble dryer and switching it on today admitted he had “assisted” her into the machine.
Giving evidence at his trial Thomas Dunn said he hadn’t “pushed” or “squashed” the baby into it – but instead had “tucked her leg into it” after she had climbed in herself.
He added that he didn’t fully close the door on her, however it activated and began rotating.
Dunn said: “I didn’t know the switch was on, it would’ve been the pin that activated the safety switch when it touched it.
“She was already climbing into it and I tucked her leg in. I closed the door but not fully, it wasn’t like properly shut.
“It wasn’t long, it wasn’t like minutes she was in it.”
Dunn, 25, was giving evidence in his own defence before a jury in the trial where he is accused of assaulting the child by placing her a tumble dryer.
He told advocate Niall McCluskey, defending, that he had been “stupid” in tucking her leg in and pushing the door closed, stating it wasn’t “closed, closed.”
Asked by depute fiscal Nicola Gillespie, cross examing: “Why on earth did you do that, assist, tuck, whatever you want to call it, that child into a tumble dryer?”
He replied: “I don’t know, it was a bad judgment call.”
In his evidence Dunn denied inflicting any injuries on the child on January 8 2018, stating in evidence she had fallen in his hallway while he was in the kitchen and had banged her nose and mouth.
He said she had been fine for some time after that, however after she had a nap, she was playing with toys and he went through to the kitchen to cook her tea.
When he checked on her, he said, she was lying limp and was “unresponsive.”
He said he tried to sit her up on the couch but she slid down sideways and was “groggy and drowsy.”
Dunn said he checked her over and found a lump and a depression on two separate parts of her head.
He tried to contact her mother but failed and took her to hospital in Arbroath.
He denied knowing she had suffered serious injuries and said he had only assumed she might have had a fractured skull because he was told there was blood in her ear.
It alleged that on an occasion between December 18, 2017 and January 8 2018, at the same address, it is alleged that he assaulted the girl, then aged 13 months.
Prosecutors allege that he placed the tot in a tumble dryer and closed the door, causing the machine to activate and the inner drum to rotate to the girl’s severe injury and the danger of her life.
A final charge claims he again assaulted the girl to her severe injury and the danger of her life on January 8, 2018.
Dunn, 25, of St Ninians Place in Brechin, is said to have repeatedly struck her on the head and body, repeatedly struck her against an unknown object or objects and bit her on the arm.
At the close of the Crown case fiscal depute Nicola Gillespie withdrew a third assault charge allegedly on the girl and a further charge of assaulting a young boy from birth to 33 months.
The trial, before Sheriff Alastair Brown and a jury, continues.