Hamzah Khan death: Amanda Hutton 'held dead son all night'
- 1 October 2013
- From the section Leeds & West Yorkshire
A woman accused of the manslaughter of her son who was found dead in his cot held his body for hours, a court heard.
Hamzah Khan's mummified remains were found in his cot in Bradford in September 2011, almost two years after his death in December 2009.
Amanda Hutton, 43, told Bradford Crown Court she stayed with Hamzah "all night" after discovering he had died.
She denies manslaughter but has admitted child neglect and preventing the lawful burial of a body.
Hamzah was ill on the day before he died but Ms Hutton told the court she thought he was "poorly" rather than seriously unwell.
She told the jury she went home after getting a call at a supermarket from her older son, Tariq, 24, to say Hamzah's eyes were rolling back into his head.
"I rushed upstairs to my bedroom and found Hamzah had passed away," she said.
"I picked him up and checked all his pulse points and there was nothing. I tried to give him mouth-to-mouth but that wasn't working."
Ms Hutton said she wanted to call police but Tariq stopped her. She said she was not sure why.
Asked what she did after Hamzah died, she said: "I stayed in my bedroom all night with him. I held him for hours."
The court heard she began drinking heavily after Hamzah's death and slept on the sofa. "I just didn't know what to do," she said.
Ms Hutton had been expected to begin her defence on Monday but, the jury was told, she was not in a fit state because she had been drinking.
She admitted in court that the police went to fetch her on Monday morning but she could not continue with the trial when she arrived at court.
She said Aftab Khan - her ex-partner and Hamzah's father - had been to see her over the weekend and told her she should plead guilty.
Earlier, Ms Hutton agreed she had continued to draw child benefit for Hamzah after his death, but she told the jury this was because she thought questions would be asked if she stopped claiming.
She told the court Hamzah was a "fussy eater" but she thought he would "grow out of" his difficulties with food.
Ms Hutton said another son, Qaiser, who is now an adult, also went through a stage when he got thin as a youngster.
Stephen Meadowcroft QC, defending, asked her if she was "worried at all" about Hamzah.
She said: "No, I wasn't because Qaiser had been the same and he'd grown out of it. So I just thought [Hamzah] would grow out of it."
Paul Greaney QC, prosecuting, asked her: "You had a four-and-a-half-year-old child that fitted into a baby-grow for a six to nine-month-old baby, that hadn't been eating, and you didn't seek medical attention for him?"
She replied: "No, I didn't."
Ms Hutton denied drinking heavily before Hamzah's death and denied drinking was more important to her than her son's welfare.
She also denied locking him in a room in the dark as a punishment.
The defendant told the court about her relationship with Aftab Khan which began when she was 16 or 17.
Ms Hutton said Mr Khan could be violent towards her.
"There were good times, there were bad times," she said.
The jury has previously heard Ms Hutton and Mr Khan's relationship ended after he was charged with assaulting her in 2008.
Mr Greaney told the court there was so much rubbish in the kitchen when police entered Hutton's home in September 2011 that the freezer was difficult to open.
He said officers examined the kitchen fridge and the "top portion... contained only rotten food".
Ms Hutton earlier admitted child neglect and preventing the legal burial of a body in July.
Her son Tariq, 24, also pleaded guilty to preventing the lawful and proper burial of Hamzah's corpse.
The trial continues.