Published Monday, 05 November 2012
Baby Millie Martin, who died as a result of severe brain injuries in 2009. (© Pacemaker)
Dungannon Crown Court heard on Monday that Rachael Martin was initially questioned as a witness on four separate occasions in the months following the death of baby Millie from head injuries on 11 December 2009.
However, by 21 September 2010, police had decided to arrest her and this time interviewed her under caution as a suspect.
Martin from Main Street, Kesh, denies wilfully neglecting and allowing her daughter's death.
Her 33-year-old former lover, Barry McCarney, from Woodview Crescent, Trillick, denies murdering Millie as well as sexually and physically abusing her.
During her first 11 page interview, Martin told police that the night McCarney had rushed the toddler to hospital, he had told her; "no matter what happens, I will always love you".
However, Martin said because she "was in a mess at that time", she had not considered what McCarney had meant by the remark.
When asked about fractures to baby Millie's ribs, Martin told detectives she had "no idea" how they happened and "couldn't think" who would have harmed her daughter.
A weeping Martin, who had once described baby Millie as a "very happy, playful, adorable" youngster, broke down as she told detectives that her daughter's death had "wrecked" her whole life.
In this second interview Martin said she either couldn't remember, or didn't see anything wrong with her daughter the night she was taken to the Erne Hospital, but that the youngster bruised "extremely easily".
Martin maintained when she put baby Millie to bed that evening she was "definitely fine", but if she had found anything wrong, she would have seen to her "straight away."
She added that this was because she'd lived for the child, she "couldn't have laid a finger on her".
"Going to bed she was fine, definitely," Martin initially told detectives, before adding "she was definitely, she was grand going to bed".
Later when questioned about the multitude of injuries found on the youngster, Martin explained that she "had no idea, if I had known anything I would have got her seen to straight away... if I had have... Jesus it's a child, I live for her like."
A tearful Martin then claimed: "I couldn't have hurt her, I couldn't have, I couldn't have laid a finger on her let anybody else.
"If I had known any of this was going on, there's just no way it would have been happening, just no way.
"Cause I just... my whole life's just wrecked now".
The case continues.