Sat. May 21st, 2022

Prosecutors claim Arthur Labinjo-Hughes was killed by his father, Thomas Hughes, and his girlfriend, Emma Tustin, in June last year after being poisoned with salt and subjected to months of abuse

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes dies at hospital after being found reacting in a house in Cranmore Road, Shirley, Solihull
Arthur Labinjo-Hughes dies at hospital after being found reacting in a house in Cranmore Road, Shirley, Solihull

A father threatened to “take his (son’s) f *** ing jaw straight off his shoulders” in a text message to his partner, a jury heard.

Prosecutors allege that Arthur Labinjo-Hughes was killed by his father, Thomas Hughes, and his girlfriend, Emma Tustin, in June last year after being poisoned with salt and subjected to months of abuse.

On the second day of a trial at Coventry Crown Court, a jury panel also played dozens of audio recordings of cell phones of Arthur crying, showing images of bruises on his shoulders.

Jurors heard a series of audio recordings made by Tustin, some of which were sent to Hughes.

They were taken through audio, video, photo and message evidence from September 2019 to 2020’s first lockdown and into May last year.



Emma Tustin, 32, reportedly took 12 minutes to call 999 and took photographs of the young man as he lay dying in the hallway
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Picture:

FAcebook)






Arthur was six years old when he died
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Picture:

FAcebook)




Prosecutor Jonas Hankin QC showed the evidence in chronological order, showing jurors a selection of photos before Arthur, including those of him at a McDonald’s branch playing in a park and sitting at a table.

Hankin read further excerpts from WhatsApp messages between Hughes and Tustin as well as audio clips she had recorded.

In an exchange, the court heard, Hughes responded to a sound clip by writing, “I will deal with him when I’m home and it’s not going to be pretty.”

Jury members were told that a proposal was then made on WhatsApp to put Arthur “out with the trash” – before Tustin described the boy as “on one”.

Hughes, hearing the court, then replied, “Will not be when I take his f *** ing jaw straight off his shoulders.”

Another message Tustin sent on May 23 last year read, “I do not think I can do more here. He shuts up as soon as you walk in the door. He is malicious, cruel and just generally awful.”

A video filmed by Tustin the following day was also played for the trial, which lasted just over a minute and showed Arthur sitting on a tile floor, wearing a Batman T-shirt as he slapped himself in the face and lifted his foot to his own head in a kicking motion.

After being sent a photo of Arthur, Hughes then replied, “He’s an absolute disgrace. It’s not my son.”

Tustin sent a message to Hughes that Arthur was yelling for someone, the jury heard.

Hughes replied, “He will stay with someone who is not me. It is not polite.”




Thomas Hughes, 29, is charged with the murder of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes (right)
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Picture:

FAcebook)




Tustin later texted Hughes to tell him Arthur was looking for his uncle Blake and a dog named Harvey, the Birmingham Mail reported.

Hughes replied, “I wonder who will be next?”

Tustin: “Probably Jesus.”

Continuing the joke, Hughes suggested ‘Hitler’.

Tustin replied, “He’s fucking Hitler.”

It is alleged that Tustin carried out the fatal assault while he was alone in the care of Arthur at her home in Cranmore Road, Solihull, West Midlands.

She allegedly should have picked up her cell phone immediately afterwards to take a photograph of the young man while he was lying dying in the hallway, the jury heard.

Prosecutors claim that despite having her phone, she took 12 minutes to call 999 and told doctors that Arthur “fell and knocked on his head, and while he was on the floor, he knocked on his head five more times” .

Hughes, 29, and Tustin, 32, deny killing. Tustin has admitted one case of child abuse, but has denied further charges of the same offense. Hughes also denies child abuse.







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