Amanda Hutton trial latest: Police officer who found child's body tells of shocking discovery (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Amanda Hutton trial latest: Police officer who found child's body tells of shocking discovery
The police officer who discovered the mummified body of a child in a Bradford house today told the jury about the shocking discovery.
Richard Dove said he went into the house while working as a detective constable in the Child and Public Protection Unit on September 21, 2011.
Acting Sergeant Dove said he was told by another police officer that the house was “a tip”.
Amanda Hutton denies the manslaughter of her son, Hamzah Khan.
Acting Sgt Dove said when he went into the hallway there was a very strong smell.
“The first thing that struck me was the smell of the place. It was like rubbish mixed with sweat, mixed with urine.”
There was rubbish piled all the way down the right hand side of the hallway.
Acting Sgt Dove said he could not open the sitting room door because it was so deep in rubbish.
“I couldn’t actually move the door to get in.”
Looking through the door we saw a television set, a child’s high chair and takeaway packages and bottles.
Looking into the kitchen he saw rubbish and vodka bottles.
At the top of the stairs was a pile of mouldy soiled nappies and there was rubbish on the landing.
Acting Sgt Dove said the whole house smelt but he became acclimatised to it as he looked round.
“All the bedding was also soaked and wet with urine. I’ve never seen anything like it.”
He told the court he had now been a police officer for 11 years.
Acting Sgt Dove said while he was waiting for other officers to arrive he went back into the house and into the main bedroom.
“I felt as though there was something wrong and I did wonder to myself: 'What is a travel cot doing there?’" Acting Sgt said he found Hamzah’s body in the right-hand cot.
“There was clothing and shoes and bedding all piled up in the cot and I started taking shoes and bedding off and working my way down through the layers.
“I saw the body of a small child that was Asian in origin. He was wearing a short sleeved baby gro thing that was white.”
Acting Sgt Dove told the jury there were no signs of life. “When I first looked I was shocked because I thought to myself 'is that real?' Seeing what I have seen, sort of doubting myself.
“The thing that struck me was when I pulled the cover back the skin from the child’s forehead was stuck to the blanket. It was like mummified and I saw the right hand. It was like a fibrous stump. It was all dried out.”
Acting Sgt Dove added: “The child’s face looked mouldy."
The officer continued: “I found myself shaking. My right hand started wobbling and I had to grab my hand to calm myself down. I was still in shock and then I went downstairs."