Updated 29 December 2015

ADHD drives father to kill 2-month old daughter

A young man has pleaded guilty to murdering his own daughter after "losing control" due to mental illness


Tyler Vallance pleaded guilty today on the charge of murdering his own daughter, Isabella, who was just two months old at the time. 

Vallance also suffers from Tourette's syndrome and is likely to claim that the combination of the two conditions caused him to momentarily lose control. He was also charged with inflicting grievous bodily harm. The case was heard at Worcester Crown Court in the UK.

Read: What fuels family murder?

While the exact cause of death is unknown, it was reported that the girl was admitted to hospital on December 7, 2012 where she then died 5 days later. Mr. Vallance was just 19 at the time. The childs's mother, Jessica Wiggins, was 17.

Ms. Wiggins is also facing a charge of child cruelty and causing or allowing the death of a child. As the pair are being tried as adults, they could spend life in prison, though much of this depends on the judge's analysis of Vallance's state of mind at the time of the attack. Detention in a psychiatric hospital is also a distinct possibility. 

Read: Asperger's, Autism no excuse for mass murderers

Christopher Hotton QC prosecuting said that the prosecution's view was that it was "overwhelmingly likely that each occurred over a short period of time in a momentary loss of control by somebody with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and Tourette's."

Tourette's is a very varied disease which can present itself through small signs such as facial twitches, vocal outbursts or behavioural swings. When combined with ADHD the possibilty exists for both conditions to experience severe flares at the same time, resulting in a loss of control.

Read more:
More mothers are killing their children

4 year-old beaten to death by mother for "being gay"

Source: Daily Mail/BBC/Redditch Standard


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Delia Strondl is a Registered Career Counsellor focusing on both school readiness and career counselling. She achieved her honours in Psychology and completed a career counselling internship. Since then, she has been working with children with a variety of learning difficulties including ADHD and Cerebral Palsy.

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