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Father tells of frantic bid to save baby daughter’s life as he denies manslaughter

PUBLISHED: 14:47 13 December 2017 | UPDATED: 15:16 13 December 2017

Norwich Crown Court. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich Crown Court. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

A King’s Lynn father accused of killing his six-month-old daughter said he would never have hurt his own child - and claimed she fell onto the floor after he went to sleep with her on lying on his chest.

Officers were called to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn, Norfolk, after Milana Guzas was admitted with suspected head injuries on February 26.

She was transferred to Addenbrookes’s Hospital in Cambridge where she died on March 2 last year, after her life support equipment was turned off when it became clear she could not be revived.

Arunas Guzas, 42, of Greenland Avenue, King’s Lynn, has denied manslaughter.

Giving evidence at Norwich Crown Court, Guzas, who had the help of a Lithuanian interpreter, told the jury that he had been telling the truth when he said he would never have hurt Milana but admitted he had not at first told police and hospital staff what exactly happened as he was scared she was hurt while in his care.

“I was scared: I was terrified.”

He told the jury that he had been working nights and had very little sleep and had been looking after Milana and lying in bed with her.

He said Milana was born in August and was almost three months premature, and had to spend time in the intensive care unit at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

He said that she went to sleep lying on his chest and he also must have dropped off to sleep.

He said that he was woken by the sound of her loud cries.

“I jumped out of bed and very quickly I picked her up off the floor. I turned her around to check what was wrong but she was crying excessively.”

He said he tried talking to her and rocking her and had put her in the shower to see if that would help.

“Her eyes were so wide open I don’t know how to explain it. It looked like she was about to explode.”

He said her breathing started to become difficult and he said her crying was like something he had never heard before in a baby.

He said he massaged her body and said that she had started having cramps in her neck and leg.

“I could not understand why.”

He said that he was trying to calm her down and might have shaken her a little bit to get her attention to find out what was wrong with her.

Guzas said he had been trying to ring his partner to tell her about Milana and when she came home they had rushed her to the hospital.

He said he had not phoned emergency services as his whole emotions were with his baby. “I did not realise how bad Milana was.”

Asked by his barrister William Carter if he was telling the truth when he told medical staff he would never have hurt Milana, Guzas replied: “Yes.”

He said that he had felt responsible as Milana had been his care and said: ”It all happened in my care because I fell asleep with her on my chest.”

The trial continues.

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