Coventry & Warwickshire

Louise Porton: Murder accused 'took topless photo' in hospital toilet

Louise Porton Image copyright Other
Image caption Louise Porton was "upset but not screaming or crying", the court heard

A mother accused of murdering her two daughters took a topless photo of herself in hospital toilets while one girl was being treated, a court heard.

Louise Porton 23, of Skiddaw, Rugby, denies murdering Lexi Draper, three, and Scarlett Vaughan, 17 months.

Ms Porton was arranging to meet men she had contacted on a dating app while the three-year-old was in hospital, Birmingham Crown Court was told.

Jurors heard she also sent messages offering to perform sex acts for money.

Her daughters died within 18 days of each other - Lexi was found dead on 15 January 2018 and Scarlett on 1 February.

Image copyright Other
Image caption Ms Porton denies killing Lexi Draper, three, and Scarlett Vaughan, 17 months

In the days after Lexi was discharged on 4 January, the prosecution alleged the mother looked up online "can you actually die if you have a blocked nose and cover your mouth with tape".

She also searched "how long after drowning can someone be resuscitated?" and an article entitled "Toddler brought back to life after nearly drowning", the court heard.

Paramedic David Woods-Thomas told jurors how he was called to a bedsit on Park Road, Rugby, to treat Lexi early on 4 January.

He said he had "no idea why the child was as ill as she was".

'Not distressed'

The child was seen lying "flat on her back", he said, and, following tests, the paramedic concluded she could be suffering from "severe respiratory illness" and was "critical".

Mr Woods-Thomas said Ms Porton was "upset but not screaming or crying" and while in the ambulance, was "not at all distressed".

On another occasion, Mr Woods-Thomas encountered Ms Porton again when he was called to a police incident involving "multiple patients".

He told the court he thought she had a glass of wine in her hand.

"She said 'that's the paramedic who looked after my Lexi before she died'. She was almost pleased to see me."

The trial continues.

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