Mother, 31, denies murdering two-year-old son found in the bath

Mother, 31, denies murdering her ‘super-happy’ two-year-old son who was found submerged in bath water at the family’s £500,000 suburban home

  • Natalie Steele appeared in Cardiff Crown Court via videolink to deny murder
  • Two-year-old Reid Steele was found critically injured in the family home in Wales
  • An inquest heard he was unconscious after being drowned in the bath in August
  • Reports were being made into Steele’s mental state at the time of the killing
  • A mother accused of killing her two-year-old son by submerging him in the bath at their family home has denied the murder charge.

    Natalie Steele, 31, appeared in Cardiff Crown Court today via videolink from a secure hospital where she denied the murder of her toddler, Reid Steele. 

    Dressed in a grey jumper and with her brown hair tied up, Steele spoke only to confirm her name, date of birth and enter her not guilty plea to murder.

    An inquest heard Reid was found unconscious by his grandmother after being apparently drowned in the bathwater.

    Described as ‘super, super-happy’ by his family, Reid was found at 7.30pm in August at the family’s £500,000 home in Bridgend, south Wales. 

    Reid Steele, two, was pronounced dead on August 12 at the University Hospital of Wales after he was found critically injured at his family home in Broadlands, Bridgend, South Wales

    Reid Steele, two, was pronounced dead on August 12 at the University Hospital of Wales after he was found critically injured at his family home in Broadlands, Bridgend, South Wales

    But the hearing was told he was pronounced dead at the University Hospital of Wales the next day on August 12.

    Peter Rouch QC, defending, told the court that reports were being made into Carpet company worker Steele’s mental state at the time of the killing. 

    The inquest in Pontypridd, 12 miles north of Cardiff, was adjourned to await the outcome of criminal proceedings.

    In a tribute, Reid’s family said: ‘He was a super, super-happy, gorgeous, wonderful and intelligent little boy who lit up everyone’s lives.

    ‘He loved the garden and the beach, picking raspberries and going for walks collecting shells.

    Carpet company worker Natalie Steele, pictured, has been remanded in custody and appeared in Cardiff Crown Court via videolink today

    Carpet company worker Natalie Steele, pictured, has been remanded in custody and appeared in Cardiff Crown Court via videolink today

    Described as 'super, super-happy' by his family, Reid was found at 7.30pm 12 August at the family home in Broadlands, Bridgend, south Wales, pictured

    Described as ‘super, super-happy’ by his family, Reid was found at 7.30pm 12 August at the family home in Broadlands, Bridgend, south Wales, pictured

    He was a very chatty little boy and would happily speak to anyone.’

    The toddler, just two months away from his third birthday when he died, was described by relatives as a treasured and ‘perfect’ nephew, grandson, great-grandson and cousin.

    Judge Michael Fitton QC remanded Steele, of Broadlands, Bridgend, into custody.

    He told her: ‘Thank you very much for your cooperation today and I have noted you have been listening carefully.

    ‘The next hearing will be on February 25 and the trial date will be confirmed shortly.

    ‘You will be remanded into custody and I will extend the custody time limit until May 16.’

    The family are trying to raise money for the Noah’s Ark childrens unit at the Cardiff hospital, where he spent his last night.

    The family said: ‘We cannot put into words how utterly amazing the staff were at the ward.

    ‘They allowed Reid’s grandparents to stay overnight to be close to him and supplied a care package for them including a t-shirt, toothbrush etc.

    In a tribute, Reid's family said: 'He was a super, super-happy, gorgeous, wonderful and intelligent little boy who lit up everyone's lives'

    In a tribute, Reid’s family said: ‘He was a super, super-happy, gorgeous, wonderful and intelligent little boy who lit up everyone’s lives’ 

    ‘They allowed all six of us to visit him in pairs whilst he fought for his life. We will never be able to express our appreciation of how amazing they were.

    ‘They did everything they possibly could to save his life and went above and beyond to ensure we were all supported the whole time.

    ‘They allowed us in a separate room to grieve and had a room for us to eat and drink if we so needed.

    ‘We want to raise as much money as we can in Reid’s memory for Noah’s Ark, he would’ve loved this.

    An inquest hearing was told toddler Reid was pronounced dead a the University Hospital of Wales, pictured is outside the accident and emergency department, the next day on August 12 (file photo)

    An inquest hearing was told toddler Reid was pronounced dead a the University Hospital of Wales, pictured is outside the accident and emergency department, the next day on August 12 (file photo)

    ‘His favourite story was also Noah’s Ark so it seems very fitting to fundraise for this charity.

    ‘Reid was honestly the most energetic, happy, intelligent, beautiful and loved child we have ever met.

    ‘He was able to count to 10 in three languages.

    ‘He frequently asked “Are you okay?” whenever he spoke to anyone because he cared for everything and everyone. 

    Flowers, tributes and toys left near where two-year-old Reid Steele was found critically injured in Bridgend, south Wales

    Flowers, tributes and toys left near where two-year-old Reid Steele was found critically injured in Bridgend, south Wales

    'His favourite things were Bob the Builder, Winnie the Pooh and the Heffalump, the beach, shells and pebbles, diggers, flowers and nature,' a statement from his family read. Tributes of flowers, toys and messages are left near his family home in Bridgend

    ‘His favourite things were Bob the Builder, Winnie the Pooh and the Heffalump, the beach, shells and pebbles, diggers, flowers and nature,’ a statement from his family read. Tributes of flowers, toys and messages are left near his family home in Bridgend

    ‘His favourite things were Bob the Builder, Winnie the Pooh and the Heffalump, the beach, shells and pebbles, diggers, flowers and nature.

    ‘Reid lit up everyone’s lives. He adored the songs You Are My Sunshine, This Little Light of Mine and Bob the Builder.

    ‘We miss him with every fibre of our beings.

    ‘Reid never experienced evil or pain in his little life, he was so adored by all of us.  

    A further case management hearing will take place on February 25, with a trial provisionally listed to begin on May 3 and last around seven days.

    Comments are closed.