Family admit neglect after toddler drowned

A FATHER from Wrington has admitted neglecting his two-year-old child after he was found drowned in a garden pond.

Andrew Marshall, aged 22, of The Glebe, originally faced charges of manslaughter in relation to his son, Daniel Rees-Smith, who died on June 4 last year.

The child’s mother, Charlotte Rees-Smith, aged 20, and the grandmother, Hilary Rees, aged 44, also faced charges of manslaughter.

But yesterday (Mon), before the trial at Bristol Crown Court officially got under-way, all three pleaded guilty to having ‘neglected, abandoned, or exposed Daniel Rees-Smith in a manner likely to cause unnecessary suffering or injury to health’.

The toddler died after drowning in a garden pond in his grandmother’s garden in Bristol last summer.

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Marshall accepted he had neglected the child on the day of his death and Rees-Smith, of Hicks Court, St George, Bristol, and Rees, of Mount Hill Road, Hanham, accepted a charge of child neglect and cruelty from April 2009 until June 2010.

Prosecuting, Rupert Lowe, said the pleas were accepted, and after discussions with the Crown Prosecution Service it was agreed to drop the manslaughter charges against the trio - which Mr Justice Maddison said was ‘appropriate’.

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All three are due to be sentenced later this month.

FOR the full story buy this Thursday’s Weston Mercury.

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