By Alex Glenn •
Published: 02 Dec 2021 • 7:51
Disabled man ‘imprisoned by mum weighed six stone and was close to death.’ The 22-year-old son with autism had allegedly been locked in an attic for seven months.
Mum Lorna Hewitt, 43, and stepdad Craig, 42, have been accused of locking their vulnerable son Matthew Langley in an attic. When Matthew was found he weighed in at only six stone. The court has heard how Matthew was ‘close to death.
Matthew was rescued from a house in Sheffield in June last year. He had been dehydrated and underweight. Matthew is said to have had “his life hanging in the balance”.
When police inspected the house they discovered vomit and faeces on the bedding and all over the floor. The door to Matthew’s attic room appeared to have been locked from the outside.
Sheffield Crown Court heard how Matthew was rushed to hospital. From his injuries, it appeared he had been crawling around on the floor.
Nicholas Campbell QC, prosecuting told the court how Matthew was suffering from kidney damage. Campbell explained that Matthew’s sodium levels were ‘dangerously high’.
He went on to add: “They measured 180. They were so high they could shut down his brain and kill him. Anything above 145, there is a real chance of death.
“The Home Office pathologist examined the injuries and said the abrasions and bruises were consistent in his view with Matthew having been crawling on all fours over objects in his path.”
Matthew has been recovering well physically since he was rescued. Matthew’s mum and stepdad have pleaded not guilty to false imprisonment and causing or allowing a vulnerable adult to suffer serious harm.
The trial is ongoing.
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Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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