Evil stepdad, 23, who killed three-month-old baby girl because she looked like her real dad is jailed for life

AN EVIL STEPDAD who shook a newborn baby girl to death because she looked she looked like her real dad was jailed for life today.

Davey Everson, 23, violently shook Millie-Rose Burdett and threw her in a fit of rage and Kirsty Burdett, 25, failed to protect her.

Passing sentence at the Old Bailey today, Justice Cheema-Grubb said the killer had become "riled" at Millie-Rose's appearance.

Everson claimed the baby had choked in December 2018 while Burdett helped him cover his tracks.

But when Millie-Rose was rushed to hospital, doctors found she had suffered a bleed to the brain, from being violently shaken and thrown into her cot.

The judge said it was clear Everson had "deliberately" killed the baby and not simply lost control in the heat of an impatient moment.

Millie-Rose was born on October 10, 2018 and was admitted to hospital on December 15 of the same year suffering from multiple fractures and a severe brain injury.

While she was in a coma, her life support was turned off in January 2019.

She had suffered horrific injuries including head trauma, 12 fractures to multiple ribs, leg fractures and compression fractures to her spine.

The fatal injury was caused by Everson hurling her into a cot at the mother's home in Herts.

The court heard he had become frustrated while feeding the baby girl, swearing at her when she struggled with a large bottle she could not fit in her mouth.

Jurors at St Albans Crown Court convicted him of murder and a separate charge of cruelty to a person aged under 16 involving another young child who cannot be named.

He was also convicted of a charge of cruelty to a person aged under 16 involving another young child who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Burdett was convicted or causing or allowing the death of her daughter and the neglect of a person under 16.

The mother, wearing a silver puffer jacket and black mask, wiped away tears with a tissue as the court heart the horrific details of the case.

Everson sobbed alongside her in the dock wearing a Nike jacket as the court heard mitigation that he was "immature" and "ill-equipped" to care for a child.

Jane Bickerstaff, defending Everson, said: "In relation to the minimum term our submissions are these this offence happened within a very short compass of time.

"Secondly, that it was not premeditated. Thirdly that there was no intention to kill Millie Rose and an intention to kill is assumed within the 15 year starting point. Fourthly, that it was no doubt instantly regretted."

She added that her client has an IQ of just 65, placing him in the intellectual bracket of "mild learning disability".

Sean Larkin, defending Burdett, said she had suffered depression since the age of 16 and told the court Millie-Rose's death had a" devastating impact" on her.

During sentencing today, Justice Grubb said: "You [Everson] had many sources of help but all your promises were empty.

"You continued use excessive force when feeding and playing with her. She was a young baby and she cried. You swore at her when she struggled with a large teet on her bottle.

"When you Burdett finally admitted to police after arrest that you knew Davey was being violent to her it was not enough to protect Millie-Rose."

She continued: "You knew this young man was immature…But in reality you didn't care enough to remove her from the risk he obviously posed of causing her serious harm.

"You had an argument evidenced by texts exchanged. Millie-Rose was beginning to resemble her biological father and this riled you.

'I am sure that in your mind this was a personal rebut to you and being a father figure to the child was no longer such an attractive prospect."

Everson, who was 21 at the time, had started a relationship with Burdett in 2018 while she was pregnant with Millie-Rose after she had broken up with the father.

Everson he had told her he wanted to be a father for Millie-Rose, but he lost interest when she began looking more like her biological father.

Shortly after Burdett and Millie-Rose returned to the home in Rickmansworth, Herts., Everson became "heavy-handed" and "rough" around the child and caused bruising to her face when he winded her, the court heard.

On one occasion, a witness said Everson had "shoved the bottle hard into her mouth saying f****** drink it – take it you f***** b***h".

It is plain now Millie suffered injuries of varying degrees of severity during her short life

Prosecutor David Spens QC told the jury during the tiral: "He has never provided an account that explains how her injuries were caused.

"That is because the prosecution say the truth is he violently assaulted her in anger, most likely by shaking or throwing her against a surface such as into a cot.

"The prosecution case against Miss Burdett is that she failed to take reasonable steps to protect Millie from Mr Everson despite the clear signs that he posed a serious risk to her; that is the case in a nutshell."

The jury was told Everson was "aggressive and verbally unpleasant" towards Burdett and was "rough and violent" towards Millie-Rose.

Mr Spens said: "It is plain now Millie suffered injuries of varying degrees of severity during her short life."

The court was told around a month after her birth, Millie-Rose had bruises on her cheeks caused by Everson.

The prosecutor said in November 2018 police attended the property after the couple were heard arguing.

In a police report, it had been recorded: "There has been a verbal argument between the couple due to the stress of their one-month-old baby. No offence has been disclosed."

Mr Spens said that in the same month during a phone call with a social worker, Everson said a bruise on Millie-Rose's face had been caused when he was accidentally "burping" her.

Burdett was in the background of the call and was able to hear what was being said, the court heard.

Mr Spens said: "Pausing there, is winding a possible explanation for bruises to a baby's face? If not, Davey Everson has injured Millie and lied to Social Services, with Kirsty Burdett’s acquiescence."

Later that same month, Millie-Rose was taken to Watford General Hospital after she had been "screaming in pain", but it was put down to "colic"- which is when there is obvious explanation for why the baby is crying.

Following the baby's death, the post-mortem examination revealed Millie-Rose's ribs had been fractured at some point around the time she was taken to hospital.


After Millie-Rose's death, Burdett was interviewed and said it was a lie that her boyfriend had caused the bruising.

The prosecutor said: "By December it must have been clear to Kirsty Burdett that Davey Everson had serious problems with controlling his anger.

"However, rather than reporting his behaviour and ending the relationship, Kirsty Burdett had defended him, covered up for him."

On December 15, Everson told a 999 operator that Millie-Rose wasn't breathing properly and she was taken by ambulance to Watford General Hospital.

Everson told an officer who went to the house he was feeding Millie-Rose when he tried to burp her and her head and arms went backwards and she became floppy, Mr Spens said.

At the hospital, a CT scan showed Millie-Rose was suffering from a bleed on her brain and she had bruises on her left forearm and left forehead.

Everson was arrested later that day at the hospital on suspicion of attempted murder.

In a police interview he declined to answer questions and gave officers a prepared statement in which he said: "At no time did I cause any harm to Millie Rose. I do not wish to make any further comment.”

The court heard that in Burdett’s first interview with police officers she told them her boyfriend could be "heavy handed" with the baby.

She said: "All I can think he’s put the milk in too far down; she’s drunk too much – that’s why she has choked. But that doesn’t explain the bleed on the brain …"

Dr Nathaniel Cary, a highly experienced consultant forensic pathologistsaid that the case was towards the upper end of severity in terms of examples of shaking impact, because of the nature and extent of skeletal injury.

In his report he said: "The case is typical of what might be called a shake-throw mechanism, where an infant is subjected to shaking, in this case severe, and thrown down onto an unyielding surface or some upright structure."

The jury was told Millie-Rose’s death resulted from traumatic head injury.

Everson was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 18 years.

Burdett denied but was convicted or causing or allowing the death of a child and neglect of a person under 16.

She was sentenced to six years imprisonment.

After the verdict, Senior Crown Prosecutor Rebecca Waller for the Crown Prosecution Service said: “This is a tragic case of a defenceless infant who suffered horrendous treatment at the hands of a violent man and was failed by her mother, who had a duty to protect her from harm.

“Both defendants repeatedly lied about Millie Rose’s frequent injuries. However, evidence from medical experts has enabled us to get to the truth of what happened to her during her short life, and secure Everson’s conviction for her untimely death.

“The jury have also concluded that Millie Rose’s mother did not take the steps she could and should have taken to keep her child safe, ultimately causing or allowing her death.”

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