Friday 23 February 2018

'I miss Emily so much' - Father tells of agony after mother cleared of their daughter's killing

Bernadette Scully and inset Harun Barut
Bernadette Scully and inset Harun Barut
Luke Byrne

Luke Byrne

The father of Emily Barut has spoken of his heartbreak after her mother Dr Bernadette Scully - his estranged wife - was cleared of the manslaughter of the severely disabled 11-year-old.

Harun Barut, whose relationship with Dr Scully broke down in 2003, said he missed his daughter so much.

Speaking over the weekend, for the first time since the case came to national attention, Mr Barut said he was unable to attend the full trial of Dr Scully because it was too painful.

"I miss Emily so much. She was my little girl and I loved her," he said.

On Friday, Dr Scully was acquitted of the manslaughter of Emily at their home in Co Offaly four years ago.

It was alleged that she killed her by an act of gross negligence involving the administration of an excessive quantity of chloral hydrate on September 15, 2012.

Dr Scully (58) pleaded not guilty and was cleared of the charges, saying afterwards that she was "traumatised" by the criminal proceedings and describing her daughter as "my little bird with a broken wing".

Turkish-born Mr Barut, who is the bar manager at Sean Og's in Edenderry, Co Offaly, told the Sunday World he fathered Emily in 2000, after the couple underwent three rounds of IVF treatment.


He also spoke of his experience of the trial.

"I had to be at the trial on one day because I was called to give evidence.

"But it was very painful, too painful - I didn't want to be there," he said.

He described how even after the relationship with his wife ended, he would still see Emily.

"I had broken up with Bernadette, but the women who looked after [Emily] would bring her to me and I would walk around the town with her," he said.

Emily had microcephaly, severe epilepsy and could not speak or move.

She had been in pain for the last eight days of her life, having had a medical procedure to replace the tube into her stomach, through which she received fluids and medication.

During her trial, Dr Scully said, she had administered chloral hydrate when her daughter became upset at 2am and 6am the day she died.

She said her daughter then had a massive fit after 11am and she administered more.

She said she had given more than double in those nine hours that she had ever previously given in 24 hours. She told gardai she knew she had given too much.

Dr Scully tried to take her own life twice after Emily had died, the second time by overdosing on medication for which she had written a prescription in her elderly mother's name.

She had sent her partner to fill the prescription, its purpose unknown to him. He found Emily dead and Dr Scully unconscious that evening.

Asked about the outcome of the case, Mr Barut said he did not know what to think.

"There were doctors there to give evidence and the law is the law," he said.

"To be honest I can't make any decision about what I think. I'd like to leave that for a couple of weeks."

Following her acquittal, Dr Scully released a statement in which she said she could not have made it through the ordeal without the love and support of her current partner Andrius and his daughter Kotryna.


"I have been very humbled by the kindness and support offered to me and my family by friends, neighbours, former patients, the staff at my surgery, the people of Tullamore, Edenderry and surrounding areas, and the complete strangers who have taken the time to send messages, cards, flowers , mass bouquets and letters.

"Your positive energy has helped me and my family enormously in surviving the past 4 years and in particular during the course of the trial," she said.

"Emily was my little bird with a broken wing whom I loved, cared for and protected.

"Our struggle is mirrored in the lives of so many people in similar situations in Ireland.

"Like me, very many parents and carers of children who are disabled struggle on a daily basis to get access to services and support systems which are very often simply not there," she added.


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