Finance worker, 43, ‘shook six-week-old baby to death’

Pedro Rubim, 43, has denied manslaughter, at Blackfriars Crown Court

A City worker accused of shaking his baby to death told a paramedic operator his baby had fallen off a sofa bed, a jury heard.

Pedro Rubim, 43, is accused of killing his seven week old son Alejandro in February 2016. 

Rubim, who worked for Global asset Management as an administrative assistant, claimed his son fell out of a baby bouncer which was on a sofa bed while he was out the room to get his next bottle.

The fall happened while the baby’s mother, Rubim’s wife Maribel Rodriguez, 40, was out at a dentist appointment. 

The baby was initially taken to the Royal Free Hospital where he was stabilised before he was transported to Great Ormond Street Hospital for further tests.

At Royal Free, Rubim told consultant Paediatrician Dr Michael Greenberg what had happened, explaining Alejandro had fallen from the baby bouncer.

The doctor told the parents the child had bleeding on the brain and suffered a significant brain injury.

Sally O’Neill QC, prosecuting, said: ‘Dr Greenberg was concerned that this history of Alejandro having slipped off a baby bouncer on a low sofa bed seemed inconsistent with the extent of he injury.


The jury in his trial at Blackfriars Crown Court were today played the 999 call made by Rubim at 11:15am on February 20, saying his son had fallen off a sofa bed at the family’s small flat in Hampstead, North London.

In the call, Rubim said ‘I can’t even talk’ before the operator asked Rubim what had happened.

He said: ‘The baby fell off, erm….. we call it a bed and like a sofa bed, he fell on the floor. 

‘Now he’s gone…..he’s not moving at all….. and he’s bleeding from his nose…. nose and mouth.’

He was asked by the operator if the blood was coming from the inside the nose, and he said: ‘I think it’s coming from inside…. and he’s very very numb he doesn’t do anything.’

He went on to say: ‘His eyes aren’t really open but he is not doing anything at all. He doesn’t respond to anything. His eyes aren’t moving.’

The operator asked how high had Alejandro had fallen from, and Rubim said: ‘It’s not too high, it’s about I don’t know 10cm or something.’

And when asked what caused the fall, he said: ‘It’s because he was…. he was too on the edge he should have been more in the middle..’

‘He explained to the parents they would would be investigating for possible bleeding disorder and the possibility of the injury being non-accidental.’

The court heard Alejandro was pronounced dead on February 24, 2016, at Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Consultant forensic pathologist Dr Nat Cary carried out he post-mortem on the baby’s body and concluded his death was ‘an example of a fatal head injury of the shaking/impact type’. 

Dr Cary gave the cause of death as head injury.

The prosecutor said: ‘In Dr Cary’s opinion, it was not plausible that a low level fall could cause the nature and extent of both bruising and the internal signs of injury present in the brain, the eyes and the cervical spine.’

She added: ‘He concluded that this is a pattern of injuries he would expect to see if a young infant were forcibly thrown to the ground or against some upright structure, with or without and element of movement or shaking.’

Explaining as to why Rubim may have killed his son, Ms O’Neill QC said: ‘Why he did so is more difficult to understand but sometimes, for example, people snap when a baby keeps crying and they won’t stop, particularly perhaps if they are tired or stressed or whatever.

‘I am not suggesting that any of those possibilities was the case here.

‘All that we are in the position say is that that 45 day old baby was in the sole care of his father at the time he received those injuries which led to his death four days later.’

Rubim moved to the UK from Portugal in 2006 to work for Global Asset Management and had been in a relationship with his wife Maribel, a nanny from Columbia, for five years.

They had been living together in a one bedroom flat in Finchley Road, Camden since 2013.

Maribel went on maternity leave in 2015 and Rubim had a month’s paternity leave after his son was born and had only been back at work for a couple of weeks before his son’s death, the court heard. 

Rubim, of Southgate, north London, denies manslaughter.

The trial continues.


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