New investigation into dad Hamid Baldelli after baby Nico Maynard's death

Daily Echo: Hamid Baldelli Hamid Baldelli

A DAD who was arrested on suspicion of murdering his own baby but later released without charge is today at the centre of a new police investigation.

Officers have confirmed that an inquiry is under way to establish whether any further offences have been committed in connection with the death of three-month-old Nico Maynard.

As previously reported by the Daily Echo, Nico was found dead in his cot at his Southampton home, where he lived with his twin sister, mother Jodie Maynard and father Hamid Baldelli.

A post-mortem revealed that the baby had suffered a skull fracture prior to his death and a murder inquiry was launched.

As a result officers discovered that Mr Baldelli had a conviction for child cruelty after he admitted causing a skull fracture to a child who he had from a previous relationship in another part of the country.

After being released from prison for that offence, Mr Baldelli was told to notify the authorities if he ever became a father again – which he failed to do when Miss Maynard gave birth to Nico and his sister in June 2011.

As previously reported, an inquest into Nico’s death heard how Mr Baldelli had deliberately used a false name on the children’s birth certificates to evade detection by social services.

That claim is now being investigated by Hampshire police.

The force has confirmed to the Daily Echo that as a result of that information, it is actively investigating whether Mr Baldelli, 28, did commit an offence when registering Nico and his sister’s birth.

A spokesman said: “As a result of evidence heard at the inquest, Hampshire police are now investigating whether any crime has been committed regarding the registering of the children’s births.

“It is a complicated issue which we are looking into and will be seeking legal advice once we have carried out our inquiries to establish whether any crime has been committed.”

The spokesman added that no arrests have been made.

Nico Maynard’s inquest last month found that there were three factors involved in his death, the skull fracture and brain injury, the fact that the child was face down in the moses basket – a well-known risk factor in sudden infant death – and the fact that Nico had a chronic lung inflammation that could have contributed to his death.

Following that medical evidence and police inquiry, the Crown Prosecution Service decided that there was not enough evidence to charge either Mr Baldelli or his partner Jodie Maynard.

However, coroner Keith Wiseman recorded an open verdict to reflect the degree of uncertainty over the baby’s death.

During the hearing Mr Wiseman also read extracts from the family court hearing which was dealing with the care of the surviving twin and in doing so, examined Nico’s death in detail.

In that case Mr Justice Baker found that on the balance of probabilities, a lesser burden of proof required than in the criminal courts, Mr Baldelli had inflicted the injury to Nico and injuries to his twin sister who was also examined and found to have a leg fracture and possible skull fracture.

Those proceedings heard evidence of Mr Baldelli’s “uncontrollable temper” and that he was a man who was “prone to bouts of anger”.

Mr Justice Baker concluded that Mr Baldelli was “a massive risk to young children”.

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