Mum accused of murdering three-month-old baby blames ‘violent’ partner, court hears

Rosalin Baker and Jeffrey Wiltshire are on trial at the Old Bailey (Picture: Clara Molden/PA Images)

Rosalin Baker and Jeffrey Wiltshire are on trial at the Old Bailey (Picture: Clara Molden/PA Images) - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

A man accused of murdering his three-month-old daughter used to beat the baby’s mum with the end of a knife he kept above his bedroom door, a court has heard.

Rosalin Baker, giving evidence, told how Jeffrey Wiltshire would frequently abuse her, and said that she was “petrified” of him.

She said: “He would use a knife, the handle part. It was a long kitchen knife. He used to put it above the door, on a bit of a ledge.”

The pair are accused of killing their daughter Imani and covering it up by staging her death on a bus on September 28 last year.

The Old Bailey also heard how Wiltshire, 52, had been violent to Baker, 25, while she was pregnant and once hit her while she was holding Imani.

She said: “I was at Jeffrey’s house. Me and him had an argument. I had Imani in my hand.

“He turned round and punched me in my right eye. I was bleeding all over Imani.”

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She told the court how she did not love Wiltshire and that they had “more bad times than good”.

Ian Henderson QC, for the defence, asked Baker if she had caused injuries to Imani’s head, ribs and wrist.

She replied “No” on each occasion.

Mr Henderson asked: “If you didn’t cause those injuries then who was it?”

Baker replied: “Jeffrey.”

The court heard how Baker, one of seven siblings, grew up in Stratford but moved to Colchester with her mum when she was in Year 11, as a result of domestic violence between Baker’s parents.

Although her mum settled in Colchester, Baker returned to London when she was 17.

She met Wiltshire a year later and the two began a relationship, with her living at his home in Morris Avenue, Manor Park.

When asked to describe it, Baker told the court: “Boyfriend and girlfriend - when he chose to.”

Baker testified that she was not happy Wiltshire had relationships with other women and he had turned violent when she confronted him about it.

She also told jurors that she had originally known Wiltshire as Leon, and only found out his real first name when she came across a letter.

The court heard how the couple’s only money came from benefits and that Wiltshire had control of a bank card, which was in Baker’s name.

Baker and Wiltshire deny murder and causing or allowing the death of a child.

The trial continues.