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Face and head burns consistent with scalding

BURNS to the head of Neil McCarthy were consistent with a hot liquid striking his face, a burns expert has told Toowoomba Supreme Court.

Dr Michael Rudd examined Mr McCarthy at the Royal Brisbane Hospital after he arrived from Toowoomba Hospital on March 13, 2009.

Explaining hospital photographs shown to the court of Mr McCarthy's injuries, Dr Rudd said the 70-year-old had burns to the whole of his face, forehead, ears and some burns to the top of his head.

The injuries were consistent with Mr McCarthy being scalded with a hot liquid, in particular hot water.

Swelling to his throat above the larynx and around his eyes were consistent with some of the hot liquid entering his mouth and that he had his eyes closed at the time of impact.

The prosecution claims Peggy Louise Wyborn, 31, poured hot water on Mr McCarthy which set off a chain of events that ultimately led to his death.

She has pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder.

Mr McCarthy had been found unconscious outside Wyborn's then home in Robsart St, North Toowoomba, on the night of March 12, 2009.

He was rushed to Toowoomba Hospital before being transferred to the Royal Brisbane where he was immobilised and treated.

He never regained consciousness.

Pathologist Dr Alex Olumbe, who performed the autopsy after Mr McCarthy's death on April 3, 2009, told the court he found the deceased's immobility during the three weeks he was bedridden and treated in hospital had been the primary cause leading to DVT, blood clots forming in his legs, which dislodged and moved up into his heart and lungs.

The defence is expected to produce its own expert pathologist evidence today which, while agreeing with the cause of death, disputes the mechanism found in Dr Olumbe's autopsy.

Topics:  murder trial, peggy wyborn, toowoomba, toowoomba supreme court


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