'I was asleep when TV fell on son' says Burnley woman

A MUM accused of killing her four-month-old son by dropping a TV on his head has told a court she was ‘not a bad mother’.

Natalie McMillan, 25, told a jury she was asleep upstairs when the TV fell and killed her son Kian at their home in Scarlett Street, Burnley, last December.

She said that Kian’s father Edward Hanratty, 41, was responsible for the incident. Initially McMillan had told paramedics and police that the TV had fallen as she tried to arrange the scart leads at the back of the TV.

But yesterday she told Preston Crown Court that she had only said that because she was scared of Hanratty.

He maintained he was asleep in the kitchen when McMillan woke him to say she had dropped the TV on Kian. The court heard that Hanratty had first been before Bradford Youth Court at the age of 12.

The hearing was told that in July this year he had turned up drunk to an appointment at a drug intervention programme in Shipley.

This was just weeks after Natalie McMillan had ended their relationship and he had been told that she was changing her version of events.

He told drug workers he did not want to go back to prison but said: “She’s young, she’s a mum, they will feel sorry for her.”

When the prosecution put it to McMillan that she was a bad mother, she responded by saying: “I am not a bad mother.” She also told the court that she had lied about her drug use because she was ashamed of it.

The prosecution has alleged that McMillan was not in any fit state to look after Kian because she had taken heroin, valium and an amount of alcohol.

Both defendants were arrested and drug tests later confirmed McMillan had taken heroin and valium close to the time of the incident, and Hanratty had used heroin and cocaine in the 24 hours before the incident.

McMillan, of Clarendon Road, Leeds, denies man-slaughter by gross negligence and child cruelty.

Hanratty, of Dirkhill Road, Bradford, denies a charge of child cruelty.

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