A mother who went on a drink and cocaine binge while her nine-year-old boy was mauled to death by an American bulldog cross has apologised to his father - as a court heard there had been three previous incidents with the dog.Was I right, or was I right?
Today, senior coroner for Cornwall, Andrew Cox, said Willis had made a 'serious error of judgment and a serious mistake' in leaving Frankie alone with the dog but her negligence was not sufficient to allow him to record a conclusion of unlawful killing.
Instead, he recorded a narrative conclusion and said he would be writing a preventing future deaths report to Devon and Cornwall Police. It came as the court heard the dog had previously attacked three people in Plymouth between 2016 and 2018.
'When I went into the caravan the dog followed me in and Frankie asked me if the dog could stay in and I asked Sadie, 'Is he alright' and she said, 'Yeah, take Winnie, Winnie loves kids.'
Loves them to death.
The most heart-rending part of this story is that the poor kid had defensive wounds, indicating that he tried - futilely - to fight off the beast that weighed more than he did...
Andrew Cox, the senior coroner for Cornwall, said: 'It does raise the question in my mind whether steps could have been taken earlier that may have avoided this tragic outcome.
'It is manifestly obvious now to us having heard all of the evidence and having learnt of the incidents in 2016 and 2018 that there was a risk of this dog attacking Frankie.
'At the time Ms Willis did not know that and I have accepted her evidence.
'The same cannot be said of Ms Totterdell as she must have known of the earlier incidents and was spoken to by the police following the incident in 2016 and spoken to by the mother of the child bitten in 2018.'
But that's the problem, isn't it? She was just 'spoken to'. The police being seemingly handicapped by the old adage that a dog is 'allowed one bite' even when it's already had two or three.
He said: 'I want the police to check the systems they now have in place are sufficiently robust to ensure where that happens, if it is necessary, a dog is dealt with before this sort of incident can happen again.
'I want to be very clear, I am not saying that the police did not take the appropriate steps on this occasion.
'We know there were two incidents in 2016 but the events of 2018 were not brought to police attention.
'What it seems to me is important is that a robust system is in place so that if there are incidents like this in the future, we can be confident that those dogs that need to be are dealt with.'
Don't hold your breath, Mr Cox...