Wales

Prestatyn fire deaths trial: Judge will accept majority verdict

Clockwise from left: Liam Timbrell; Lee-Anna Shiers and son Charlie; niece Skye and nephew Bailey
Image caption Five members of the same family died as a result of the fire in Prestatyn

The judge in the trial of a woman accused of killing five family members said he will accept a majority verdict.

Mr Justice John Griffith Williams gave the instruction after the jury had failed to reach a decision.

Lee-Anna Shiers, 20, her partner Liam Timbrell, 23, died with son Charlie, 15 months, and his cousins Skye, two, and Bailey, four, as a result of a fire at their Prestatyn flat.

Melanie Smith, 43, denies starting the fatal blaze last October.

Mold Crown Court was told the fire was started in a row over a pushchair being left in the shared hallway.

The jury heard accusations during the three-week trial that Ms Smith, who lived in the flat below the family, threatened to burn Ms Shiers' flat.

The fire spread upstairs, trapping the family. Ms Shiers, her niece and nephew died in the fire.

Mr Timbrell and Charlie died later in hospital.

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