BBC true crime series highlights Amoret's forensic role in proving manslaughter charge
A University of Winchester academic’s role in investigating an appalling case of gross negligence manslaughter is highlighted in a new BBC true crime series.
Forensic Entomologist Dr Amoret Whitaker is featured in the latest series of BBC One’s Expert Witness.
Dyfed-Powys Police enlisted Amoret’s assistance after the death of 16-year-old Kaylea Titford in October 2020. Kaylea was born with spina bifida and therefore required the use of a wheelchair, however, the teenager was active in sports, especially basketball, and even took part in try-outs for the Paralympics.
Prior to the Covid pandemic she regularly attended school, but when the first lockdown was introduced in March, 2020 she became confined to her home. Within six months she was bedridden, unable to use her wheelchair due to her significant weight increase and living in squalid conditions in her bedroom.
Her death was caused by infection due to ulcers which had formed as a result of being permanently bedridden, and her parents Alun Titford and Sarah Lloyd-Jones were found guilty of causing her death by criminal neglect.
To prove this, police had to provide evidence that the squalid conditions in which Kayleigh was found were those in which she had lived in prior to her death.
The presence of large numbers of house flies in her bedroom, and fly larvae found within the infected sores on her body would be proof of neglect if found to be present before her death.
Earlier this year a court heard that Amoret’s analysis of the evidence had determined that the fly larvae had been feeding on her body for at least 48 hours before her death, possibly longer.
Both parents were convicted of manslaughter by gross negligence.
Amoret said: “This was an upsetting case for everyone involved but you realise afterwards you have done some good. You’ve helped with the police investigation and helped get justice for the victim. I think that’s a really important thing to do.”
Episode 15 of Expert Witness, entitled Grave Secrets and Lockdown Tragedy, in which Amoret appears, will be broadcast on Friday 8 September 2023, and is already available to view on the BBC iPlayer.
Amoret's appearance on BBC Radio 4's The Life Scientific is still available on catch-up at https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01pp567
To find out about studying forensics at the University of Winchester visit BSc (Hons) Forensic Investigation - University of WinchesterBack to media centre