A man who murdered his six-week-old child in Broadstairs has been jailed for life following an investigation by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate.
Lee Vernon inflicted fatal head injuries on his son, McKenzie Ellis, who died at a London Hospital in July 2018.
Vernon, 21 and of no fixed address, was found guilty of murder, and two counts of grievous bodily harm, following a trial at Maidstone Crown Court in October. He was sentenced at the same court today (November 29) and will serve a minimum term of 16 years.
Kent Police was alerted to McKenzie’s injuries on July 23, when Vernon called the emergency services to report his son was unconscious and he had no idea why. When asked if the child had hurt himself in any way he replied ‘no, not really.’
Medical crews found McKenzie had suffered trauma to his head and he died at a specialist trauma unit three days later.
In police interview Vernon said his son had accidentally fallen from his grip, causing the child to hit himself on the arm of a sofa before falling to the floor.
Medical experts however disclosed McKenzie had suffered multiple injuries, some of which would have been caused on at least two previous occasions.
Detective Chief Inspector Richard Vickery, Kent Police’s investigating officer for this case, said: “It is impossible to comprehend the unnecessary suffering McKenzie endured during his short life and I am pleased Vernon has received a substantial sentence that means he is not able to harm another child.
“This was a complex and deeply emotional case and I am grateful to the medical experts, and my investigation team, who worked tirelessly to pursue justice for McKenzie.”
An NSPCC spokesperson said: “A parent’s priority should be protecting their baby from harm – but instead Vernon subjected his son to a horrific attack that tragically ended his short life.
“His actions will have a devastating impact on a family robbed of the chance of watching McKenzie grow up.
“It is vital that anyone with concerns about the welfare of a child speaks out. They can contact the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.”
I know it’s a longish sentence but is it really long enough as Mckenzie would still be a child when his minimum sentence of 16 years is up. I feel sentences should really be longer and especially here as he had already done harm to baby Mckenzie before he killed him and if he is released in 16 years will only be 37 still young enough to live a good life while Mckenzie will never be able to. His sentence should be doubled so that he cannot have what his child has had taken away. So sad so young RIP young Mckenzie.
I totally agree with u longer sentences need to be put in place
Totally agree I’d never let him out why should he have a life he can enjoy that baby can’t throw away the key
I hope they inflict on that horrid person what he did to his son let the inmates get to him. I am a person who couldn’t have children and when u hear stuff like this it makes my blood boil. A child is to be loved and cared for.
Karen I’m 100% with you on the inmates giving payback make him suffer I know it’s not right to say these things as i/we are really behaving like Mckenzie’s Dad thuggish but you don’t do what you did (dad) to a defenseless baby. Karen I feel for you not having the pleasure of being able to have a baby ??best wishes.
O yes he will get beatings in prison to start with. I was in prison 45 year ago for nicking cars my Borstal sentence sorted me out.
They used to put the sex offenders right by the canteen so about 500 inmates would have to pass their cells and we all had a kick on the doors, also it was not unusual to hear screaming where they got a severe beating from the screws.
Often a cell was cordened off where the inmate was “ill” , next peek through the spy hole the inmates face didnt look that good some lost teeth lol.
The trouble is the scum will be shipped off to a prison / wing where they are all the same , not one will see any wrong with what they done, the officers are well trained to be sympathetic and the scum will have a life of luxury.
How much does it cost the taxpayer to keep this scum alive? Bring back hanging me thinks after a couple of years to give time for teeth to be removed and bones to be broken.
Is Paul serious? Does he really think we should have prisons where it’s okay for inmates to break the bones and smash the teeth of other inmates?
Marva yes we don’t want to see it happening but it does and will do by other prisoners or by occasionally a jailer. I personally think that the jailer do not do the beating but give other prisoners the chance. But one thing for sure I will agree with anyone beating up anyone convicted of terrorism offences so as not to let them out to kill the people who are helping them it’s disgusting how this was left to happen. And I’m even more disgusted with the Conservative and Labour Parties arguing over who is responsible for letting the scum terrorist out they should be saying sorry to the families for their ineptitude at not making the law water tight so no terrorists could be released early. Marva you do realise that a 6 week old boy his son was killed by him he had been beaten his bones had been broken days before the last time he hurt him and left him so badly harmed Mckenzie didn’t stand a chance when someone was supposed to care for him killed him and you say (between the lines) he shouldn’t get what is coming to him let dad know what he feels like to be helpless and beaten up.
My comment was general not specific.