“Why isn’t mummy here?”
This is a question that often comes from the tiny lips of four-year-old Danielle Ramsoomair.
A Pleasantville woman yesterday recalled how her two-month-old baby fell from her arms while her common-law husband was beating her with a cutlass. Sophia Edwards, 22, was giving evidence against her estranged husband, Wendell Scipio, who is accused of beating baby Joshua on Christmas Day at their Blitz Village Extension home. He is also charged with committing common assault on the infant.
Scipio, a security guard, has been in custody since the alleged incident last December 25. He previously pleaded guilty to beating Edwards and was fined, but was refused bail on charges relating to the baby. Edwards told acting Deputy Chief Magistrate Rajendra Rambachan in the San Fernando First Court that she and Scipio returned home after visiting his relatives at around 11 pm. She said they began arguing and she sat down on a chair holding their baby.
“Due to the argument, he started to slap he and cuff me up,” she said. Edwards said she threatened to leave and Scipio went into the kitchen and returned with a cutlass. “He started to point it at me and the baby...He started to lash me about my body,” she said. “I was ‘breaksin’ from the baby getting lash.”
Edwards said she was holding the baby in her right hand and “breaksin” with the left. However, the baby fell and hit the floor. Under cross-examination by Scipio, who does not have an attorney, Edwards admitted they drank puncheon and “double dog” (Scotch whisky) earlier in the day and were both intoxicated.
Scipio contended that he was holding a knife, not a cutlass, and while he admitted cuffing and slapping Edwards, he denied beating her with a cutlass. He put to Edwards that the baby fell when she stood up to fight him. Edwards, however, denied his version of what happened. Edwards will return to court on Monday for further cross-examination.