Mother wrongly convicted in infant’s death acquitted

Court tells Sherry Sherrett-Robinson it was ‘profoundly regrettable’ that she was convicted and jailed for crime she didn’t commit.

The Globe and Mail

By Kirk Makin

December 7, 2009

The ranks of the wrongly convicted grew by one Monday as an Ontario woman who served a year in jail for the death of her baby boy was acquitted of infanticide by the Ontario Court of Appeal.

After hearing a joint submission in favour of Sherry Sherrett-Robinson by the Crown and defence, the court told the 34-year-old woman it was “profoundly regrettable” that she was wrongly convicted based on errors by Charles Smith, who was once the toast of the pathology community.

“The tragedy of this four-month-old child’s death is compounded by the fact that his mother was wrongly convicted of infanticide, served a year in jail, and she lost her other child,” Mr. Justice Marc Rosenberg said.

Ms. Sherrett-Robinson was convicted in 1999 after Dr. Smith testified that he found signs consistent with homicide on the body of her four-month-old son, Joshua Sherrett.

James Lockyer, a lawyer for the Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted, told the court Monday that all four of Dr. Smith’s suspicious findings – a skull fracture, swelling of the brain, burst blood vessels and small, unexpected lacerations – were either normal in accidental asphyxiation cases or caused by Dr. Smith’s autopsy techniques.



Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.