Amanda Hutton latest: Evidence among most distressing ever heard by jury, prosecutor tells court (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Mother's 'gross failures' killed Hamzah Khan, prosecutor tells Bradford Crown Court in summing up
2:34pm Wednesday 2nd October 2013 in News
Few juries in this country will have heard evidence as distressing as that in the case of a Bradford mother accused of starving her child to death and leaving him mummifying in his cot, prosecuting barrister Paul Greaney QC said this morning.
Mr Greaney was summing up the Crown’s case in the trial of Amanda Hutton who denies the manslaughter by gross neglect of her four-year-old son Hamzah Khan.
Mr Greaney said Hamzah’s body lay in a travel cot in his mother’s bedroom for almost two years.
“It had become mummified, infested with insects and in part it became mouldy,” he told Bradford Crown Court.
Richard Dove, the experienced police officer who found Hamzah’s body, reported that his hand and arm shook uncontrollably when he made the shocking discovery.
Another police officer was “at the edge of her emotions” when she saw the squalor in the Bradford house.
“Few juries in this country will have been confronted with evidence as distressing as you have over the last ten days or so,” Mr Greaney said.
He went on: “How did a four-and-a-half-year-old boy come to starve to death in one of our cities in the 2lst century?”
Mr Greaney said Hutton’s “gross failures” killed Hamzah.
He alleged she “hit the bottle in her bedroom” years before Hamzah was born. A woman staying at her home ten months before Hamzah died described her as “a nasty drunk.”
“Drink was more important to her than her child. It is a terrible thing to say about a mother, but it is the truth,” Mr Greaney said.
One witness said Hutton would call Hamzah “a silly bastard.” It was alleged he was once trapped under a drawer with things piled on top of him, and that Hutton also locked him in a bedroom with the lights out as a punishment.
Mr Greaney maintained Hutton, 43, now of Farcliffe Road, Girlington, Bradford, “cared less” for Hamzah and failed him terribly.
“Can there be a more fundamental duty to your child than to feed him and to seek medical attention when necessary?” he asked.
Mr Greaney said Hamzah was tiny and weighed “next to nothing” in the months before he died.
One witness stated that when she hugged him: “I did not squeeze him otherwise I would have broken his bones.”
“That child was wasting away and the failure to get medical help for him is simply unforgiveable,” Mr Greaney said.
It was “blindingly obvious” that malnourishment killed Hamzah.
“It is criminal that he never saw a doctor after he left hospital. The crime is Amanda Hutton’s and we invite you to return a guilty verdict accordingly,” Mr Greaney concluded.
The trial continues.