Parents to be sentenced for ‘savage and brutal’ murder of baby son

Two parents who murdered their 10-month-old son just weeks after he returned to care for him, are to be sentenced for his murder.

Shannon Marsden and Stephen Bowden were indicted in April for the murder of Finley Bowden on Christmas Day 2020. derby crown court,

The pair wed their son, who had previously described him as “perfect” and a “cuddly, chunky munchkin”, weeks after he returned to full-time care following a family court order made in October that year. .

After Finley returned to his home in Holland Road, Old Whittington, chestfield, derbyshireIn mid-November, her parents began what prosecutors said was a “savage and brutal” campaign of abuse that resulted in Finlay suffering 130 separate injuries at the time of her death.

They included a fractured thigh and broken pelvis, burn marks and 71 bruises, plus Finley also had sepsis and endocarditis – an infection of the lining of the heart.

After Boden and Marsden were convicted, Paul Bullock, a Detective Inspector derbyshire policesaid the injuries were “the worst I’ve seen in my 27-year policing career”.

After her death, Bowden was heard saying how he would sell Finley’s pram on eBay and the pair were later seen laughing together in a taxi.

During the trial, the 30-year-old suggested that Finley’s injuries may have been caused by him being jostled too hard, and said the pram comment had been made in an attempt to “lighten the mood”.

It was also said that while visiting Finley’s body in the hospital’s Chapel of Rest, 22-year-old Marsden was heard to say: “Her father beat her to death. I didn’t protect her.

The jury saw photographs of the couple’s razed home, including photographs taken by police that showed cannabis paraphernalia after the baby had lost milk, and heard how the pair had spoken to social workers and family members about their Hiding the abuse.

Finley’s clothing and bedding were found stained with saliva, blood and feces.

Class B drug use was a prominent topic in the days just before Finley’s death, with a drug deal witnessed by a social worker during an unannounced visit in December 2020.

Mrs Justice Amanda Tipples remanded the pair in custody following their conviction following a trial that began last October.

The same judge is set to sentence the pair in the same court on Friday with an expected start time of 10.30am.