Claydon: GP claims he was hit by child’s mother

A GP has denied hitting a young child under forceful questioning – claiming instead that the child’s mother punched him in the face.

Paul Thomas, 58, of Norwich Road, Claydon, told magistrates he “had never, and would never” hit a child, on the second day of his assault trial at South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court, in Ipswich. He denies the offence.

Giving evidence yesterday, he said he acted neither aggressively, nor angrily and denied the mother’s claims that he hit the child on the bottom, leaving a red mark and three bruises, on the evening of September 11, 2010.

Thomas, a GP of 24 years’ standing who founded the Gipping Valley Practice, in Barham, said he had never even shouted at a child.

Thomas “saw stars” after the child’s mother punched him on the cheek, he claimed. He suspected the bone was fractured and complained to police that he had been assaulted.

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When asked if he had struck the child or caused any injury, Thomas replied: “Definitely not. Not at all.”

But Juliet Donovan, prosecuting, suggested Thomas had “lost it” and lashed out, saying: “I’m going to teach you a lesson.” Thomas said the mother’s account was a lie, adding that if the child had been injured, it had not been caused by him.

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Miss Donovan proposed: “You hit (the child) with your open hand approximately three times.” Thomas replied: “Not even once. The only person assaulted that evening was me.”

Miss Donovan added: “You stand to lose a lot, and you will do anything to stop that from happening. You’re telling lies to save yourself – you’re in denial.” Thomas responded: “If I committed a crime I’ll put my hands up and admit to it,” before again repeating his denial.

The trial continues.

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