The mother and grandmother of teenager Jordan Burling were today sentenced for his manslaughter by neglect at Leeds Crown Court today.
Jordan was 18 years old when he died in his home in Butterbowl Garth, Farnley, on 30 June 2016 after paramedics were called to the house.
Emergency services discovered him lying on a blow-up mattress in the family’s living room, surrounded by abject squalor, and was given emergency treatment to no avail. His cause of death was found to be acute bronchopneumonia as a result of his malnutrition, immobility and infected bed sores.
His mother, 45-year-old Dawn Cranston, and grandmother Denise Cranston, aged 70, were sentenced to four and three years in prison respectively. His sister Abigail Burling was cleared of the manslaughter charge, but will serve 18 months in prison for causing or allowing the death of a vulnerable adult.
The court were also given details on how police found the remains of a newborn baby boy in the same house that year, in a rucksack which was also
said to contain a “rancid-smelling liquid.” Dawn claimed she was unaware that she was pregnant, and gave birth to a still-born baby. The remains had been kept in the bag on top of a wardrobe, and remained there for around 14 years.
Prosecutors likened the conditions of vulnerable Jordan’s death to that of a victim in a World War Two concentration camp, informing the court that he was unable to walk, eat for himself, or use the toilet, and would soil himself up to five times a day, requiring his mother and grandmother to change his incontinence pads regularly.
Doctors in the court described how paramedics had removed the pad to find that Jordan, who was 5ft 5ins and weighed five stone 11 pounds at the time of his death, was severely emaciated, and had a number of ulcers, two of which were so thick that they exposed his pelvic and hip bones.
In a statement, Jordan’s family said: “It has been truly horrific to learn in court the full extent of the pain and suffering that Jordan went through, and also to discover that Steven had another son who he and the family knew nothing about.
“As a family, we feel we have been denied any knowledge of that baby boy’s existence. We have also been
denied the quality time we should have had with Jordan if those responsible for his death had got the medical care he needed.
“We now want to be left to grieve in peace and to lay Jordan and the baby to rest with the dignity and love they deserve.”