Amanda Hutton starved four-year-old son to death then ordered pizza, court hears

Mother with history of alcohol and drug abuse let her son starve to death, court told

The mummified corpse of a four-year-old boy was found in a cot in his mother’s bedroom almost two years after he starved to death, a court heard today.

Jurors were told how Hamzah Khan’s body was still dressed in a baby grow, designed for a child aged six- to nine-months-old, when police made the “dreadful discovery” at a house in Bradford, West Yorkshire, in September 2011. Due to malnutrition, the clothes still fitted him.

Prosecutors allege that the boy’s mother, Amanda Hutton, a former care assistant, had failed to feed her son “over a lengthy period” resulting in his death. Hutton, 43,  who prosecutors claim was an abuser of alcohol and cannabis, denies manslaughter.

Paul Greaney, QC for the prosecution, told Bradford Crown Court that Hamzah died on 15 December 2009, but that his body was not discovered until 21 months later. “Amanda Hutton failed to provide her child with the nourishment that he needed to survive and, in so failing, she killed him,” he said.

Hutton, who ordered pizza within hours of her son’s death, had continued to claim child benefit for him, it is alleged.

Mr Greaney told the court the boy’s body was found after a police community support officer spoke to Hutton and became concerned about the smell coming from her house.

Eventually, more police arrived and entered the property. “What they discovered disturbed even hardened officers,” he said.

Mr Greaney claimed the officers were faced with “conditions of squalor”. He told the jury: “Furthermore, within a cot in the bedroom of Amanda Hutton, a police officer found the mummified corpse of a child.”

The jury would have to consider whether Hamzah “became a secondary and less important consideration” than her substance addictions, he added.

Mr Greaney said he expected the  defence to argue that the boy’s malnutrition could have arisen through “some naturally occurring condition”. But the prosecution alleges that Hutton is guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence for failing to feed her son adequately and failing to seek medical assistance for him.

Jurors were told that Hamzah’s father, Aftab Khan, was separated from Hutton and lived elsewhere. In police interviews Hutton was said to have described placing the boy in  his cot and treating his body “with dignity”. He was found by police officers “with a teddy”.

The case continues.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
SPONSORED FEATURES
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones