Parents 'failed' Kaylea Titford who was living in conditions 'not fit for animals' before she died

Kaylea Titford died aged 16 in October 2020. Credit: Athena Picture Agency

The trial of a man charged with causing the death of his daughter by allegedly allowing her to become morbidly obese has begun.

Alun Titford, from Powys, is charged with gross negligence, manslaughter and causing or allowing the death of a child or vulnerable person.

His 16-year-old daughter, Kaylea Louise Titford, was found dead at home in Newtown in October 2020. The teenager weighed 146kg (more than 22 stones) and had a BMI of 70.

Prosecutor Caroline Rees KC said that at the time of her death in October 2020 Kaylea was "living in conditions not fit for animals" and forced to use "puppy pads" to go to the toilet on her urine-soaked floor.

During the coronavirus lockdown, Kaylea, who was previously described by teachers as a "lovely" and "funny and chatty girl", became isolated from people outside the family and relied more on her parents, Mold Crown Court heard on Wednesday (January 18).

Mr Titford, 45, denies the charges against him and it is his case that Kaylea’s mother, Sarah Lloyd Jones, was her main carer.

Jurors have been told Ms Lloyd Jones previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter by gross negligence, accepting that she failed grossly in her duty of care towards Kaylea.

Alun Titford arrived at court on Tuesday (January 17). Credit: ITV Wales

Caroline Rees KC explained the prosecution will argue that the defendant, Alun Titford, lived in the home with his daughter and both parents were responsible for her care.

The court heard how Kaylea was a vulnerable girl who depended on others to care for her welfare. She suffered from spina bifida, which meant that she had very little feeling from the waist down, and very limited mobility as she could not use her legs. The teenager was a wheelchair user from a young age.

The prosecution argued Kaylea died due to failing by both her mother and father in their duty of care towards her health and welfare needs, which included "taking reasonable steps to care for her health and welfare needs, including her nutritional needs, her mobility, providing her with a clean and hygienic living environment, keeping her clean and in seeking appropriate medical assistance when she required it".

It added that the national Covid lockdown from March 2020 meant the serious failures were hidden from the scrutiny of the outside world - during which Kaylea was bed ridden, living in an unhygienic room and her skin was inflamed and ulcerated.

The lacking in duty of care gave rise to an obvious and serious risk of death, the prosecution told the court.

Despite her particular needs, Kaylea had not seen any medical professional for around nine months prior to her death. By the time of her death, she was immobile in her bed within a cluttered bedroom on the ground floor.

Caroline Rees KC explained: "We say that the truly horrific circumstances, both in sight and smell, in which Kaylea Titford was found dead on 10 October 2020 were such that Alan Titford must have known or at the very least should have known of the squalid and degrading conditions in which she lived, ate and slept and the desperately neglected physical condition into which she had fallen.

"He lived in the same house as Kaylea during the period in which she lived in that degrading condition and he did absolutely nothing about it."

The prosecution said that he could not simply wash his hands of his duties as a parent and place all responsibility at the other parent’s door.

The trial is ongoing and expected to last three weeks. Alun Titford has pleaded not guilty to the offence against him.

The defence’s case will be heard once the prosecution has concluded.