A father has been jailed after killing his baby daughter by subjecting her to a horrific assault.

Jordan Lee, 29, formerly of Onslow Road, Blackpool, has been handed a life sentence with a minimum of 16 years, after standing trial at Preston Crown Court, where on Thursday, he was found guilty of the murder of four-month-old Willow Lee.

Willow had been found seriously injured at the Onslow Road address on Thursday, December 3 and was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital before being transferred to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

She sadly died on Sunday, December 6.

Police launched an investigation, and Lee was initially charged with attempted murder but following Willow’s death the charge was amended to one of murder.

A Home Office pathologist found Willow’s death was a direct consequence of a traumatic head injury, and that this injury was consistent with forceful shaking and probable impact to the head.

Lee had claimed in police interview that Willow had fallen from the sofa, but further pathological findings showed her injuries were consistent with severe trauma, far beyond what could be caused by a trivial childhood accident.

Lancashire Telegraph:

As the medical evidence emerged he modified his account of what happened, claiming that a second accident had occurred as he carried Willow upstairs after the original fall.

Willow had also suffered extensive bruising to her ear, face and arm, that the pathologist said was likely a result of gripping, pinching or squeezing, punching or slapping. These injuries would have caused immense pain and suffering.

Prior to the assault Lee had been heard shouting at Willow, telling her to “shut up”.

Det Insp Mark Dickinson, of the Lancashire Police Force Major Investigation Team, said: “Willow Lee was a four-month-old baby who died at the hands of someone who should have protected her – her father, Jordan Lee.

“Lee carried out a horrendous series of assaults on his daughter, leaving her with catastrophic head injuries.

"These injuries led to her death three days later.

“Since then Lee has refused to admit his guilt, claiming repeatedly that Willow fell from the sofa.

"As the medical evidence emerged, he modified his account, claiming that another accident occurred as he carried Willow upstairs after the original fall.

“Thankfully the jury saw through his lies and he has now been found guilty of and sentenced for Willow’s murder.

“Willow’s mother and wider family have been left utterly heartbroken by her death and I have no doubt they will never fully recover from this horrendous loss.

"They have also been forced through the ordeal of giving evidence at trial.

"I can only commend them for the dignified way in which they have conducted themselves.

"I hope the result from court today gives them some comfort.

“Lee himself is now facing a long custodial sentence and I hope he will use this time to reflect on the damage he has caused to so many lives.”

Lancashire Telegraph:

Jade Bell, Willow’s mother, said: “Willow was such a beautiful happy baby that had the best cheeky smile, and that smile would always cheer you up and light up the room.

"We all miss her dearly and there are not enough words to express that.

"To have lost her at such a young age and in the way we have has impacted myself and my family so much and my life will never be the same without my blue-eyed angel.

“The first time anyone met her they instantly fell in love; she was always so happy and smiley.

"I will always remember the amazing times I had with Willow and how she changed my life.

"I could talk about her forever and how she will always be my perfect baby and forever my Willow Grace."

An NSPCC spokesperson said: “Willow was subjected to a horrifying attack by her own father, the very person she was reliant on to keep her safe from harm.

“Jordan Lee must live with the knowledge that the harm he inflicted on his baby daughter ended her life, and we hope Willow’s family are receiving the support they need at this unimaginably difficult time.

“Babies and young children are the most vulnerable members of our society, completely dependent on adults for care, and it is up to every one of us to do what we can to protect them.

“We would urge anybody who has any concerns for the wellbeing of a child to contact the NSPCC helpline on 0808 8005000.”


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