No murder trial for Margate mother who killed twins

Jake and Chloe Ford Image copyright Steven Ford
Image caption Jake and Chloe Ford died on Boxing Day

A woman who drowned her toddler twins on Boxing Day after her relationship ended will not face a murder trial.

Prosecution lawyers have accepted Samantha Ford's guilty plea to manslaughter by diminished responsibility, which she made last month.

The bodies of 23-month-old Jake and Chloe Ford were found at a house in Margate, Kent, in the early hours of 27 December.

Ford had denied two counts of murder.

At the Old Bailey, prosecutor Ed Brown QC said the decision to accept the manslaughter plea came after careful consideration of a psychiatric report.

He said: "We have considered all the reports and all the facts to do with this case very carefully. It is a case of great sensitivity in all respects.

"I have taken instructions from those instructing me, and the father of the deceased children has of course been consulted in respect of this question.

"The result of those consultations are that those pleas are to be acceptable and the Crown does not ask for a trial in respect of those two counts of murder."

Image caption The twins were discovered at the home in Margate on 27 December

Ford, who is in custody, was not required to attend the hearing at which the judge ordered a further report to examine her current mental state.

Mr Justice Edis adjourned sentencing to 26 July.

He accepted the prosecution's decision and said the reasons would become "obvious" at the next hearing.

Lawyers told reporters after the hearing that Ms Ford had drowned the two children and this had followed the end of a relationship.

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