No blood on baton: expert

The Harley Hicks trial - the case day by day

A HOME-MADE baton which prosecutors allege was used to bludgeon a baby to death did not have traces of blood, a court has heard.

Baby Zayden Veal-Whitting was found dead in a pool of blood by his mother on June 15, 2012.

Harley Hicks, 21, has been charged with murder, aggravated burglary and three counts of theft.

He has pleaded not guilty.

Victoria Police forensic officer Kate Outteridge told the Supreme Court on Thursday there was  "extremely strong support for the hypothesis that Zayden Veal-Whitting is a contributor to the DNA detected'' on the baton.

Ms Outteridge told the court on Friday that blood could not be detected on the baton.

“I could not confirm the presence of blood on the item,” she said.

This meant there was an amount of blood too small to detect, or no blood present at all, she said. 

The court heard a bloodstain on a pair of tracksuit pants recovered from Gisborne did not belong to the deceased baby.

Forensic pathologist Jacqueline Lee, who conducted an autopsy on Zayden, also gave evidence on Friday.

She said Zayden had “a minimum of 25 injuries to the face, and a minimum of eight injuries to the scalp” caused by severe force from a blunt object.

Jurors viewed a photo of the deceased baby as Dr Lee detailed the injuries which included bruising, cuts, bone fractures and brain injuries.

Aiden Kirby also provided testimony. 

The court previously heard Hicks said he had been with Kirby on June 14/15, then signed documents admitting he had lied. 

Kirby said he knew Hicks but was not his friend and said he had last spoken to him about two years before June 14/15. 

“I had nothin’ to do with him, never seen him or anything,” he said.  

“I hadn’t seen him that day at all.”

Crown prosecutor Michele Williams SC asked if he had been out committing burglaries that night.

“Nah, wasn’t me,” he said.

Kirby said he went to bed about 1am on June 15. 

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