Child abuse trial sparks raging debate about shaken baby syndrome
CINCINNATI (Deborah Dixon) -- A raging debate in child abuse cases is getting louder. It has to do with "shaken baby syndrome," and the traumatic brain injury it can cause. A few say it doesn't exist at all. Video helped convict 19-year-old Dakota Doss of Child Endangering for shaking the 8-month-old daughter of his girlfriend. Doss says he did it because she choked on formula.However, doctors found a bite mark on her thigh with Doss' DNA. A team of experts there said shaking caused the bleeding on her brain."What has been proven is shaking a child can cause death or devastating injury," said Assistant Prosecutor Scott O'Reilly.What happened in the Doss trial is happening all over the country. Dr. O'Reilly, called a hired mercenary, took stand for defense and questioned if shaken baby syndrome is real."A lot of people think force of shaking baby there should be bruising where child was gripped while shaking," said Donald Cater of the Ohio Innocence Project.The Innocence Project has been involved in appealing shaken baby convictions.Dr. John Galaznik testified for the defense. He's with the University of Alabama Student Health Center. He testified that humans can't shake children hard enough to cause such injuries and choking might have caused the bleeding in Cataleya's brain."That's a bunch of crap," said Dr. Bob Sharpiro. "Little children don't choke on formula in such a way they convulse and cause traumatic brain injury."Dr. Shapiro called courtrooms a bad place to debate medical science, since juries and judges haven't been to medical school."When you start discussing experts who are getting a million dollars, you have to wonder, are they looking at science or financial gain?" said Dr. Sharpio.Doss will be sentenced Thursday for child endangering. Cataleya is being raised by her father. She's cross-eyed and her cognitive abilities are below what they should be. The innocence project said the Doss case is not likely one the "no shaken baby syndrome" defense would work on because of the bite mark, which it considers evidence of abuse. Doss' attorney did not return our call about this story. Local 12 will have the sentencing covered on Thursday.Follow Deborah Dixon on Twitter @crimestopperdeb, and LIKE her on Facebook.Follow us on Twitter @Local12 and LIKE us on Facebook for updates!