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Mother admits manslaughter of baby boy who drowned in bath after ‘seat mistake’

A mother has pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of her toddler son who drowned in the bath.

Danielle Massey, 31, also admitted possessing cannabis on the day her seven-month-old son Charlie Goodall died at their home in County Durham in February 2022.

The defense said the baby drowned because the bath seat was not properly secured.

Prosecutor Richard Wright KC told the hearing at Sheffield Crown Court: “It is accepted that there was a prolonged period of inattention during which this child died.”

Charlie was found unconscious in the bath when police were called by paramedics to a house in West Chilton Terrace, Chilton, on February 16, 2022.

He was flown to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle but died shortly after arrival.

Martin Sharpe, defending the plaintiff, told the court that Ms Massey had admitted it was “her fault that the seat was not properly secured to the bath”.

“She should have attached it to a flat bath, hers is concave, the suction cup wouldn’t work properly. It caused her child to tip over and drown,” Mr Sharpe said.

The case was adjourned until July 26 to determine whether a Newton hearing is necessary based on Massey’s guilty plea.