Young boy’s body ‘dumped in river by mum and stepdad after they beat him’

Horrific details have emerged after a five-year-old boy’s body was dumped in a river ‘like fly-tipped rubbish’ after he was beaten so badly his injuries were more consistent with those sustained in a high-speed car crash, a court heard. 

Logan Mwangi suffered 56 ‘catastrophic’ injuries to his head, face, torso, arms, and legs before he was pulled from the River Ogmore near his home village of Sarn in Bridgend County on July 31, 2021. 

His mum Angharad Williamson, 30, her partner John Cole, 40, and a 14-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, are charged with murdering the youngster between July 28 and August 1. 

Caroline Rees QC, prosecuting, told jurors at Cardiff Crown Court he had been subjected to a ‘brutal and sustained assault’ by Cole and the then 13-year-old boy in the family home in Lower Llansantffraid on July 30. 

The court heard Logan had been isolating at the time of his death after testing positive for Covid on July 21.  

Ms Rees said Logan ‘was a normal five-year-old, active and energetic’.

The court heard he had tested positive for Covid on July 21 and had been self-isolating at home.

Williamson was said to have struggled to raise Logan in the lead up to his death, with her ‘motherly bond’ with her son ‘significantly fractured’ during his time confined indoors. 

Jurors heard Cole came into Logan’s life in 2019, when he began a relationship with Williamson, but did not enjoy a bond with the child, saying he ‘didn’t like’ him. 

The court was told the teenager had previously made ‘repeated threats that he wanted to kill Logan and wanted him dead’. 

He was described by the prosecutor as a ‘complex, troubled and violent boy’ who had been trained in the martial art of Muay Thai, also known as Thai boxing, to green belt level. 

Ms Rees went on: ‘At the time of his death Logan was hidden away from the outside world and there was no scrutiny of what was going on behind closed doors of his home. 

‘He would not have stood a chance against any one of the defendants, let alone three of them acting together. 

‘Having killed Logan behind closed doors each of the defendants played their part in a cover-up of the true circumstances of his death. 

‘Each were desperate to save themselves and each prioritised their self-preservation over everything else, in particular over the needs of Logan.’ 

Jurors heard the investigation was to show each defendant was involved in Logan’s death and the cover-up afterwards.  

Ms Rees said: ‘The key to unlocking the circumstances of Logan’s death and the location of his body in the River Ogmore was found in CCTV recordings from Lower Llansantffraid, Sarn.’ 

The jury was shown footage of Cole and the teenager leaving the family home in the early hours of July 31. 

Cole was filmed carrying something in his arms, which he later admitted was Logan’s lifeless body. 

The court heard the pair walked across the river and along a path to the spot where Logan’s body was found 

Cole and the boy then returned to the property before heading out again, it was said, this time to dispose of Logan’s bloodied and torn dinosaur pyjama top. 

During this time, a light can be seen switching on and off in Logan’s bedroom, which Ms Rees said proves Williamson was awake and knew what had happened to her son. 

The prosecutor told the court that evidence from Williamson’s mobile phone, which showed she was awake in the early hours of the morning – after the time she told police she had gone to sleep – also proves her involvement. 

She added: ‘Angharad Williamson must have been awake and up and about, fully aware Logan had died and that his body had been dumped in the river by her partner – disposed of like they were fly-tipping rubbish.’ 

An apparently distraught Williamson reported Logan missing at 5.45am on July 31, accusing a woman she did not like of kidnapping him, the court was told. 

Cole and the youth were then caught on CCTV again, this time walking around and calling for Logan, jurors heard. 

His mum’s 999 call and the faked search for Logan were described by Ms Rees as a ‘callous’ and ‘elaborate’ attempt to cover up the trio’s role in his death. 

All three defendants are accused of perverting the course of justice, including by moving Logan’s body to the river near Pandy Park, removing his clothing, washing bloodstained bed linen, and making a false missing person report to police. 

Williamson and the youth pleaded not guilty to both offences, while Cole denied murder but admitted perverting the course of justice. 

She and Cole were also charged with causing or allowing the death of a child, which they both denied. 

Williamson, dressed in a navy-blue blazer and glasses with dark brown hair, appeared distressed as a summary of the evidence against her and the two other defendants was read out. 

She began to cry, becoming more upset as the jury was shown a picture of Logan and the circumstances of his death were described.  

Williamson sobbed as she was led out of the dock at the end of the hearing. 

Cole appeared in the dock wearing glasses and a light grey V-neck jumper over a white T-shirt, while the teenager appeared in a black T-shirt via video link from another room in the court. 

Both adults have been remanded in custody since they were charged, while the boy is in local council care. 

The trial, expected to last around eight weeks, continues. 

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