Leicester

Drowned boy's mother said five-year-old "hated water"

Charlie Dunn Image copyright Dunn family
Image caption Charlie Dunn was pulled from the Blue Lagoon children's pool at Bosworth Water Park

The mother of a five-year-old boy who drowned at a water park told a court she was confident he would not enter a lake because he "hated water".

Charlie Dunn, who could not swim, was found submerged at Bosworth Water Park in Leicestershire on 23 July 2016.

His stepfather Paul Smith was jailed in December after admitting manslaughter by gross negligence at trial.

Charlie's mother, Lynsey Dunn, admitted neglecting him in a separate incident - and was given a suspended sentence.

Image copyright SWNS
Image caption Charlie's stepfather Paul Smith was jailed after admitting manslaughter by gross negligence

More evidence relating to events surrounding Charlie's death has emerged in a ruling by Judge Grenville Perry, who had analysed events during separate family court proceedings.

Judge Perry said Charlie's mother "was adamant that [Charlie] only went up to his ankles because he hated water, and indeed he had to be led by her by the hand to even enter the water.

"The family had armbands but she decided not to take them because she knew [Charlie] would not want to go in the water," he added.

"They all went into the water soon after arriving. She knew there was no lifeguard."

Image copyright SWNS
Image caption Charlie Dunn, five, drowned at Bosworth Water Park in Leicestershire in July 2016

Judge Perry described Dunn's evidence as "sad", adding: "She showed no understanding that children as young as five cannot be relied on to always do what they say they are doing."

The court also heard that an off-duty policewoman had been at the water park, in Market Bosworth, with her family, on the day Charlie died.

She noticed "a young boy" wandering in water up to chest height "looking lonely and lost" and had him "under close observation" for 10 minutes.

She had been "sufficiently concerned" to go over to where he was and ask other children if he was with them.

Image copyright SWNS
Image caption Charlie's mother, Lynsey Dunn, was described by prosecutors as being of "limited intelligence"

Charlie had been placed on the child protection register in 2012, when he was 14 months old.

Staffordshire County Council is now conducting a serious case review into his death.

Image caption Charlie was pulled from the 1.4m-deep lagoon by other children

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