Enraged dad battered baby son to death before playing video games

A twisted dad killed his seven-week-old son because he "wouldn't stop crying" – before getting back to gaming on his Playstation.

Joseph McDonald carried out the horrifying attack on son Lucas in the city of Benalla, Australia, on October 24, 2019.

Prosecutors told the Supreme Court of Victoria that McDonald hit the baby or struck his head against a hard object, leaving him with “catastrophic” brain injuries.

The child’s mum Samantha Duckmanton then heard a noise unlike “she had previously heard Lucas make”, Judge Stephen Kaye said.

She went into the lounge and saw him rocking the baby and using the Playstation, the Australian NCA Newswire reports.

McDonald told her: “I’m just swaddling him.”

Lucas was left with “dazed” eyes and Ms Duckmanton took him to hospital the following day.

The child was tragically pronounced dead four days later after doctors found him to be critically ill.

McDonald – who played video games for six to 10 hours every day and was addicted to cannabis – confessed he became “frustrated” after Lucas “wouldn’t stop crying”.

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He turned himself into police later that week.

Justice Kaye said his anger management issues worsened after the birth of Lucas, his second child.

He told the court: “(They were) assaults committed by you to vent your anger and frustration.

“He deserved to be treated with the tenderness, love and care that every baby should receive.

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“Instead, by your actions, you took his life from him.”

Justice Kaye added: “(He was) totally vulnerable and dependent on you for his safety and wellbeing.

“You deprived him of his most basic right – his right to life.”

McDonald pleaded guilty to child homicide and was sentenced to nine years’ prison with six years and eight months’ non-parole, having already served 410 days.

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