A man has pleaded not guilty to the manslaughter of toddler Jordan Thompson in March 2005. Cecil Patrick Kennedy, the boyfriend of the toddler’s mother at the time, has been on trial for over two months in Sydney’s Downing Centre District Court.
The post-mortem examination revealed a lethal amount of the antidepressant Endep in the toddler’s system. The prosecution alleges that Kennedy used the drug to sedate Jordan because he did not like crying and felt anxious around fussy infants.
However, Kennedy’s defense barrister, Linda McSpedden, rejected these claims. McSpedden acknowledged that the child ingested a tablet that day, but argued that there was no evidence to prove that Kennedy had given it to him. She pointed out that the tablets were prescribed to Kennedy and were present in his apartment, but he strenuously denies ever giving a tablet to the child. McSpedden also mentioned the possibility that Jordan may have come across a tablet on his own.
During the trial, McSpedden highlighted Kennedy’s inconsistent statements to the detectives, suggesting that he is “not the sharpest knife in the drawer.” She also mentioned his involvement with multiple lovers, including Jordan’s mother and another woman who lived in his unit block, and described his conduct as not too bright.
In her closing address, McSpedden urged the jury to consider all the evidence in context and reminded them that guilt must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. She warned against jumping to conclusions and emphasized the importance of the prosecution meeting this burden of proof.
The trial’s closing arguments are currently underway as the jury deliberates on the case.