Cumbria

Parents of baby who suffocated in bed with them jailed

Carlisle Crown Court Image copyright Google
Image caption The pair were jailed for two years at Carlisle Crown Court

The parents of a baby who suffocated while lying between them on a single mattress have been jailed.

Carlisle Crown Court heard the couple, who cannot be named, had both been drinking alcohol before going to sleep at a "squalid" Cumbrian home.

They woke in the early hours to find the child lifeless.

Each was jailed for two years after admitting child cruelty on the basis they were jointly responsible for the death.

A post-mortem examination showed the cause of death was "overlaying" - a form of asphyxiation.

The court heard the family home was "squalid in the extreme".

There was no working toilet - instead a bin bag was found with human waste inside.

Food in the fridge was mouldy and there was evidence that a "significant amount of alcohol had been consumed", the court heard.

Judge Peter Hughes QC told the pair, who cannot be named for legal reasons, they should both bear "heavy responsibility" for the death.

He said: "It was a serious dereliction of the duty that you had to protect and safeguard your baby."

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