Mother from Belper accused of cruelty to 'murdered' baby son appears in court

Police were called to an address in Acorn Drive in Belper. Credit: BPM Media

A mother from Derbyshire accused of cruelty towards her son, who was allegedly murdered by her teenage partner, has appeared in court.

India Shemwell is charged with two offences of cruelty to four-month-old Elijah Shemwell, between December 31st 2021 and January 2nd 2022.

Elijah was found in cardiac arrest at an address in Acorn Drive in Belper on January 2nd 2022. He died three days later in hospital.

Shemwell who is 22, appeared at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates Court in Derby on 25th October.

She made no indication of a plea to charges of assault, ill-treatment, neglect or abandonment of a child or young person causing unnecessary suffering or injury.

Acorn Drive in Belper Credit: BPM Media

Prosecutor Lynette Holland said:

"There is a co-accused in this matter, Mr (Carl) Alesbrook, who has been charged with murder of the child.

"These matters are before the crown court and there is a plea and trial preparation hearing currently listed for December 8 and this matter is linked with that matter.

"I would suggest this matter is not suitable for a summary trial."

Shemwell's solicitor, Nick Wenden, made no representations.

Shemwell was instructed by magistrates to appear at the city's Crown Court on December 8th, alongside former partner Carl Alesbrook.

Alesbrook, who is 18 and from Upper Greenhill Gardens in Matlock, is also charged with inflicting grievous bodily harm without intent and inflicting GBH with intent, all between November 18th 2021 and January 2nd 2022, when he was aged 16.

At his last court appearance at Derby Crown Court in September, he was told he would face trial on April 10th next year.

Shemwell was granted bail with conditions not to contact Alesbrook, not to enter Belper, that she must live and sleep at her address in Rose Hill Street in Derby, and not to contact any prosecution witnesses and to have no unsupervised contact with a child under the age of 16.