Scott Gladwin (20) is on trial at Nottingham Crown Court for the manslaughter of four-month-old Scott Cawthorne, who died on 6th February 2010 from brain injuries caused by shaking.
Taking the stand as the key defence witness, Gladwin told the court that he and baby Scott’s mother, Kelly Middleton - who was then known as Kelly Moss - met a couple of times in the period between the baby’s death and when he was interviewed by police.
Gladwin was 16 at the time, while Kelly is around 12 years older than him.
Gladwin said that they met to have sex and that there was no conversation about what had happened to the baby.
Kelly did however tell him to tell the police that they were not in a sexual relationship, that he had only looked after her children once and that he had only lived at her house, on Woodland Avenue in Huthwaite, for a couple of weeks.
After he was interviewed by police on 16th February 2010, Gladwin said that he and Kelly met up ‘loads’ of times in locations such as woodlands known locally as Skegby Box, in church graveyards and other places.
Kelly had only admitted to one meeting - when they had arranged to meet at Healdswood School park at 2am on 23rd February - and when she was stopped by a police officer on her way there.
Their meetings were arranged by text message and telephone call and both parties would initiate them, Gladwin said.
They met for sex and nothing was said about what had happened or about the baby.
“Did she ask you whether you were responsible?,” Gladwin’s defence counsel Shaun Smith QC asked.
“No,” replied Gladwin.
He said that she would tell him she loved him in text messages and verbally but he did not know if he loved her.
They both sent text messages of a sexual nature to each other and would speak on the phone about ‘day to day stuff’.
Kelly had told Gladwin to delete the messages that she sent him, which he did, but some of her texts were recovered.
One of these read: “I miss you and can’t wait for all this mess to be sorted out.”
In cross-examination, Yvonne Coen QC, prosecuting, said Kelly ‘was in bits’ following the death of her son.
“Not in front of me she wasn’t,” replied Gladwin, stating that she did not seem very upset and was ‘not desperate’ to find out what had happened to baby Scott.
Miss Coen suggested that Kelly had been ‘stringing’ Gladwin along, which was why their relationship ended suddenly in March 2010.
“It was because she had worked out who had killed her baby and it was you,” she put to Gladwin.
“No,” he replied.
Miss Coen said that the reason Gladwin has never blamed Kelly in any police interviews is because he ‘knew she had not done anything’. Again he answered ‘no’.
“I am not going to admit to something that I have not done,” he added.
Miss Coen said that suggesting Kelly caused the injuries to her baby and then dumped him in a chair with a 16-year-old babysitter and gone to the shops, suggested she had ‘left him on the path to death’.
This was wicked she said, but blaming someone innocent was ‘truly, truly wicked’ and Gladwin had already agreed that she did not have a wicked bone in her body.
“But she has blamed me,” Gladwin said.
The trial continues.