A 28-year-old mother told a courtroom about the heartbreaking moment she found her 3-year-old son lying unconscious in the family bathtub after she left him for about 15 minutes to fold clothes.
Sahrish Idris’s heart sank when she found Aayan Ishaq dying in the water with his Peppa Pig toys after she came back with her son’s clothes.
Emergency services were called to her home in Manchester and the child was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead.
It was first thought the boy had drowned but tests couldn’t establish how he had died. Idris was later charged with manslaughter after an investigation when it emerged her son had accidentally swallowed three sleeping tablets one year before the incident.
However, her subsequent pleas to lesser charges of child neglect were accepted and Idris was given a suspended jail sentence.
At an inquest into Aayan’s death the mother recalled the tragedy. She told the hearing: “He decided he wanted a bath and I ran a bath for him.
“I then went downstairs to get his clothes which were all folded downstairs. I had out three lots in the machine that day and they were all folded downstairs.
“It had been a sunny day and I’d put three lots of washing on and had brought the washing in. Aayan enjoyed having baths and it was about 9pm which is his bedtime.
“He got his Peppa Pig toys and put them in the bath. He was sat down playing in the water… I filled the bath to his chest and I sat with him for five or ten minutes then I went downstairs to get his clothes.
“The washing was all in the front room downstairs. I was folding some clothes as well. I couldn’t hear anything but I returned upstairs and I found him lying in the bath.
“I think he was facing up, I’m not really sure – it’s a long way back and I tried to block that day out.
“I pulled him out the water and took him into the bedroom. I was on the phone to the ambulance and drying him at the same time.
“They told me to do CPR, I was so scared, I was panicking and I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t do any mouth to mouth. Then the ambulance came and took over.
“I unplugged and took the water out. I don’t know why I did it. The toys were still there.”
Idris added: “He was a lovely little boy, he had recently started nursery and was there 15 hours a week, he really enjoyed going there, he loved playing out and playing with his mates.
“He always listened to me. He was a perfect little boy.”
Dr. Melanie Newbold said: “In the toxicologist report, nothing was found that could have led to his death.
“There was one drug found, midazolam, but at a very low level.
“I’m not sure how that got in his system but it could have been given as part of the attempt to resuscitate. The medical cause of death is unascertained – there was no evidence of serious injury.”
Valerie Charles who handled a serious case review for the Manchester Safeguarding Children’s Board said: “There wasn’t really anything that could have prevented or premeditated this situation.
“There wasn’t a huge amount of involvement with the family in this period and they didn’t come to the attention of the agency very frequently.
“The mother’s presentation was genuine and positive and what was known of this child was positive.”
Idris was given 6 months in jail suspended for 2 years after family, friends and neighbors insisted she had a close relationship with the boy.
She had met her son’s father on an online dating site but she left him as he was physically and verbally abusive.
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