The father of a disabled girl who died whilst living in conditions “unfit for any animal” according to prosecutors has been found guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence.
16-year-old Kaylea Titford had spina bifida and weighed more than 22 stone when she was found dead by paramedics at her home in Newtown, Wales, in October 2020.
Sarah Lloyd-Jones, Kaylea’s mother, already admitted manslaughter by gross negligence, but her father Alun Titford had denied the charge. He claimed he “wasn’t a very good father” and left all of her care to Kaylea’s mother.
Kaylea was described as “lively” and “fiercely independent” by her teachers at Newtown High School
She loved sport and had been in contention for a Paralympic basketball team.
But Kaylea didn’t return to school after the first coronavirus lockdown. Teachers told the court that the mother gave “multiple excuses”for her absence.
Prosecutors in the case told the court that Kaylea’s parents “seriously neglected” their daughter. A pathologist concluded that she died due to “inflammation and infection in extensive areas of ulceration arising from obesity and its complications, and immobility in a girl with spina bifida and hydrocephalus”.
The paramedics who found Kaylea told the jury that her room was “dirty”, with several soiled incontinence pads on her mattress, the floor and wrapped around her legs.
When they moved her duvet, they reported a smell of “rotting flesh” filling the room and that they smell made one of them wretch.
Her bed was surrounded by takeaway cartons and urine-filled bottles. Prosecutors told the court the conditions were not fit for any animal.
Kaylea’s wheelchair was in the room, but had obviously not been used as it was stacked “high with pillows.” The mechanical hoist that should have been used to move her out of bed was also said to be “covered with cobwebs”.
Attending police officers also commented on the smell and said they had seen live maggots on her mattress.
It is said to be the first time parents have been prosecuted for failing to control their child’s diet. The couple will be sentenced on the 1st of March.