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Summary

  1. Our live coverage has now ended
  2. Live updates on Thursday 3 August 2017

Live Reporting

By Bob Dale and Kathryn Langley

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good night from the BBC Live team

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Thanks for joining us - we're done for the night but we'll be back at 06:00 BST tomorrow with more of the county's news, sport, travel and weather.

Baby Eli death: Couple guilty

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A couple from Kent have been found guilty of causing the death of a five-month-old baby boy.

Eli Cox's mother Katherine Cox, and her boyfriend Danny Shepherd, had both denied causing or allowing his death in April last year.

Truck stop treated for mosquitos

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

The eggs and larvae of a mosquito capable of transmitting tropical diseases, including the Zika virus, have been found around the Ashford truck stop, Public Health England say.

The area has been treated to remove the Asian tiger mosquitos which have become more common in Europe over recent years.

Public Health England (PHE) which monitors 30 UK airports and ports as part of its ongoing mosquito surveillance programme, said there was "no immediate risk to public health".

PHE said there are no cases of diseases known to be carried by the insect in neighbouring counties.

This is the second time the species has been found in the UK after eggs were discovered near Folkestone in October last year.

Asia tiger mosquito
Science Photo Library

'Hand gun' found after police search Maidstone house

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Two men have been arrested on suspicion of drugs offences after police searched a house in Maidstone.

Officers were called to reports of an incident in Orchard Place just after 01:00 BST today.

Crime scene investigators found cannabis inside.

They also recovered what's thought to be a handgun, which has been sent off for forensic testing.

Two men, aged 27 and 36, are being questioned on suspicion of being involved in the supply of cannabis.

Baby death: Reaction from Kent Police

Don't put the brolly away just yet

Nina Ridge

BBC Weather

It's looking nicer over the next few days, but the drizzle hasn't gone away entirely.

Here's my latest forecast.

Baby death: Pictures released of Eli

These pictures of tragic Eli Cox have been released to BBC South East Today.

Detective Inspector Ivan Beasley, of Kent Police, said after the verdicts: "The death of a child is never anything less than tragic but the circumstances behind Eli Cox's passing are especially upsetting for those of us who share a compassion for others.

"None of us will ever understand what compels people to cause harm to children, and it is unfortunately true to say that Eli suffered more than most and was robbed of his life before it had barely begun."

Eli Cox
Picture from BBC South East Today/Family handout
Family handout
Picture from BBC South East Today/Family handout
Eli Cox
Picture from BBC South East Today/Family handout

Baby Eli death: Recording captures argument at family home

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Neighbours had reported hearing arguments at the home of Katherine Cox and Danny Shepherd.

Severe disruption: M25 Kent anti-clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent anti-clockwise severe disruption, at the Dartford Tunnel.

M25 Kent - One lane closed and slow traffic on M25 anticlockwise at the Dartford Tunnel, because of a broken down van.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Baby Eli death: 'A difficult case'

Here's a statement from the Crown Prosecution Service after the verdicts in the Eli Cox case.

This has been a difficult case to prosecute due to the complex medical evidence and challenges in establishing the involvement of either or both of the defendants in relation to the fatal injury caused to Eli.

When the trial started, our case was that either Danny Shepherd or Katherine Cox had caused Eli’s injuries and the death, or were aware that there was a significant risk of serious physical harm being caused to him, and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent this.

During the course of the trial and in light of the evidence given, it became possible to say that Danny Shepherd was the perpetrator of the injuries to Eli, including the assault which led to his death.

The fatal injury and older fractures identified by one of the medical experts showed very significant similarities. This considerably undermined the defence case that they were caused by another person.”

Libby ClarkCrown Prosecution Service

Baby Eli death: neighbour tells of arguments

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A neighbour has described hearing arguments at the home of Katherine Cox and Danny Shepherd in Minster.

Eli Cox death: Why hold a serious case review?

Lauren Moss

BBC Live reporter

A serious case review is now underway to try and establish whether Eli Cox's death could have been prevented by the authorities.

It comes after his mother and her boyfriend were found guilty of causing or allowing his death.

Police were called to the home weeks before Eli's death, and the family was also known to Kent County Council.

But, as the NSPCC explain in this video, the fact a review is happening doesn't necessarily mean something went wrong.

Baby Eli death: Reaction from court

Lucinda Adam

BBC South East Today reporter

Katherine Cox
Kent Police

I've been following the case throughout the trial.

When the jury returned its verdicts, Katherine Cox fought back tears.

But Danny Shepherd showed no emotion as the couple was convicted.

Danny Shepherd
Kent Police

Baby Eli death: What do we know about the case?

Baby Eli death: Police describe death as 'tragic'

Tom Darby

BBC Live reporter

A Sheppey mother and her boyfriend have been found guilty of causing or allowing the death of her five-month-old baby.

Katherine Cox, 33, and Danny Shepherd, 25, were arrested following the death of Eli Cox in hospital on 27 April 2016.

Katherine Cox
Kent Police
Danny Shepherd
Kent Police

Baby Eli had fallen ill a fortnight earlier at the family home in Lapwing Close, Minster.

Both Cox and Shepherd denied being users of cocaine and amphetamine, despite five wraps of the latter substance being found by police in a garden shed at their home.

Drugs recovered from the Cox home
Kent Police
Drugs recovered from the Cox home
Kent Police

The death of a child is never anything less than tragic but the circumstances behind Eli Cox’s passing are especially upsetting for those of us who share a compassion for others.

None of us will ever understand what compels people to cause harm to children, and it is unfortunately true to say that Eli suffered more than most and was robbed of his life before it had barely begun.

Katherine Cox and Danny Shepherd maintained their innocence throughout but the jury saw through their lies. Only they know the true extent of the abuse Eli was put through, which is simply unthinkable to most members of society including parents who would do anything to protect their children from harm.

Detective Inspector Ivan BeasleySenior investigating officer, Kent Police

Baby Eli death: Serious case review into Eli Cox's death

Eli Cox
Family handout

A mother and her boyfriend have been found guilty of causing the death of a five-month-old baby boy in Kent.

Eli Cox's mother Katherine Cox, 33, and her boyfriend Danny Shepherd, known as 'Pickle', both denied causing or allowing his death in April last year.

Maidstone Crown Court heard Eli was killed by a "catastrophic" injury to the head, but he also had 28 fractures.

A serious case review is now underway to establish if his death could have been prevented by the authorities.

Shepherd and Cox of Lapwing Close, Minster-on-Sea, on the Isle of Sheppey. were both found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child and causing or allowing serious physical injury to a child.

Shepherd was also found guilty of possessing a class B drug.

Both will be sentenced later.

Katherine Cox and Danny Shepherd
BBC

Shepherd and Cox of Lapwing Close, Minster-on-Sea, on the Isle of Sheppey. were both found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child and causing or allowing serious physical injury to a child.

Shepherd was also found guilty of possessing a class B drug.

Both will be sentenced later.

Police were called to the home weeks before Eli's death, and Kent County Council confirmed the family was known to them.

A KCC spokesman added: "The siblings are now being appropriately cared for following the conclusion of care proceedings."

The serious case review will establish what, if any, failings were made by the authorities.

BreakingBaby Eli death: Mother and boyfriend found guilty

Baby Eli Cox
Family handout

A mother and her boyfriend have been found guilty of causing the death of five-month-old Eli Cox.

Eli's mother Katherine, and her boyfriend Danny Shepherd, were found guilty on all charges, which also included causing or allowing serious physical injury to a child, and possession of a Class B drug.

Post-mortem examinations showed Eli's death was caused by a head injury of a "shaking or shaking impact type".

He also had oxygen deprivation to his brain, a brain injury, bruises at the back of his head and fractures dating back weeks before his death.

The court heard a hair sample showed he had been "regularly exposed to amphetamine and occasionally exposed to cocaine".

More to follow as we get it.

Kick off's just around the corner

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

The new football season is just days away, so how are the Gills' preparations going at the Priestfield stadium?

Summer makes a brief return

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Look East weather

It's windy this afternoon, but tomorrow's looking promising.

Here's my forecast.

Mental health patients stranded in units for years

Depressed woman (generic)
Science Photo Library

Mental health patients across the UK are spending years stranded in acute units awaiting discharge, figures show.

Over the past two years, at least 91 patients have waited more than a year to be discharged, with at least seven patients waiting more than two years.

At least 320 patients had to wait at least 100 days to be discharged, BBC Freedom of Information requests show.

Experts say a lack of suitable accommodation and wrangling over budgets are to blame for the delays.

Read more here.

Five longest delays in England

  1. Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust: 62-year-old awaiting a residential home, delayed by 1,159 days.
  2. Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust: 60-year-old awaiting suitable housing, delayed by 868 days.
  3. Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust: 27-year-old originally admitted to A&E, awaiting suitable supported housing. Delayed by 668 days.
  4. Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust: 59-year-old delayed by 602 days.
  5. Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust: 65-year-old awaiting a placement, delayed by 583 days.

Five authorities with highest percentage of beds in delay

  1. NHS Tayside: 29.4%
  2. Hywel Dda Health Board: 20.0%
  3. Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust: 17.1%
  4. Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust: 15%
  5. Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust: 12.3%

#ICYMI: 'I live with the guilt of a man's death'

Jailed for being homosexual, Keith Biddlecombe talks about how it changed his life.

Severe accident: A20 Kent both ways

BBC News Travel

A20 Kent both ways severe accident, between Oxley Shaw Lane and Winterfield Lane.

A20 Kent - A20 London Road in Ditton closed and slow traffic in both directions between the Oxley Shaw Lane junction and the Winterfield Lane junction, because of a serious accident. Police directing traffic. Diversion in operation - Eastbound traffic is being turned around back onto the A228 and Westbound traffic is being diverted down Winterfield Lane.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Missing Abi: 'Just come home or let us know you're safe'

The father of a teenager from Rainham who's been missing for nine days has made an emotional appeal for her to come home.

Abigale Spree was last seen on 22 July.

RNLI launches campaign during 'deadliest' month

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

The RNLI is urging people to "respect the water" this summer as part of a drowning prevention campaign.

The charity says more people die in UK waters in August than any other month.

Seven men died in the sea at Camber last summer.

This morning's Kent newspaper headlines

A pile of newspapers
Getty Images

Kent Online: Cyclist Tim Bowden dies of heart attack

Kent News: Cash for fathers’ help group as PCC reveals only 8% of men suffering domestic abuse report it to police

Kent Live: The heartwarming moment a mum-to-be was reunited with her lost platinum engagement ring in Herne Bay

Severe disruption: M20 Kent eastbound

BBC News Travel

M20 Kent eastbound severe disruption, between J9 for A20 Ashford and J10 for A20.

M20 Kent - Slow traffic and one lane closed on M20 eastbound between J9, A20 (Ashford) and J10, A20 (Ashford South), because of a broken down vehicle.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

The tigers who come to tea...and breakfast

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

This wild animal park offers a room with a very different view.

Project to help protect future of bees

Almost £1m of lottery funding is being spent on helping protect endangered bumblebees.

Mural tribute to Taiyah Peebles

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A giant mural has been painted in memory of a teenager who was electrocuted on a railway line.

The body of Taiyah Peebles was discovered on the tracks near Herne Bay station last week.

Margate artist Vince Pugh says he painted the mural as a "mark of respect" to the teenager.

BBC South East Today breakfast bulletin

BBC
BBC

Here are the headlines from the breakfast bulletin:

  • A final decision on the future of children's centres in Medway will be made next Tuesday - after the council looked again at its plans.
  • Health campaigners are calling for action to limit the number of takeaways, after new research indicated there are now more than 400 in Brighton alone.
  • A footpath in Sussex - that was blocked off to the public for more than 40 years - has finally reopened.

#ICYMI: Fight to save breastfeeding support services

Thousands have signed a petition to save breastfeeding support centres across Kent, but the council says the same help will still be available.

Hold on to your hats

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Look East weather

The rain's gone, but today's all about the wind.

Here's my forecast.

Schoolgirl completes peaks challenge

A 12-year-old girl from Kent has become the youngest person to climb all of the 214 Cumbrian peaks listed in Alfred Wainwright's famous guide to the Lakeland Fells.

But for Lauren Richardson, who's from Hoo, it's been an achievement with a difference.

She's one of the country's youngest amateur radio operators and at the summit of each peak she made radio contact with other "radio hams".

Is it really August?

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

You wouldn't think so judging by the weather over the last couple of days.

Hopefully this picture will brighten up your day a little bit. It's Botany Bay taken by Carole Adams and it's our Kent #PhotoOfTheDay

Botany Bay
Carole Adams

We'll be here until 22:00 BST with all your news, sport, travel and weather for the county.

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