A man has been sentenced after he was found guilty of the manslaughter of his partner after she was scalded in a bath.
Mark Clowes, 53, of Audley, Staffordshire, was handed a two-year sentence, suspended for two-years, today (Friday 2 February) at Stafford Crown Court. He was found guilty of the gross negligence manslaughter of his 42-year-old partner Clare Bell last November.
On 9 August 2020 at 11am, Clowes gave Clare a hot bath and then helped her out of it. She was incapable as she had been drinking. It would have been obvious to Mark that Clare had suffered serious scald injuries. He later remarked to a paramedic that he saw that her skin had shed from her feet.
Clowes didn’t check on Clare for a number of hours or seek medical attention despite him being aware of the extent of her injuries and her being incapable of doing this for herself. At 5.10pm, on 9 August, Clowes called 999 and asked for an ambulance. Sadly, Clare, who was found on their bed, had already died.
Clare had 30 per cent full thickness burns and extensive scalding. The pathologist said that the scalding contributed to her death.
Clare’s close family have said:
“As a family hearing the details of our beloved Clare’s death has been extremely upsetting. Clare was taken from us by the person she trusted and who should have taken care of her. We continue to remember Clare when she was happy and healthy and all of the good times we shared together. Nothing will make up for the pain, emptiness and sorrow of losing Clare so soon. We are glad that this is finally over and can start to grieve properly and privately as a family. We can’t thank the police and everyone involved in the investigation enough.”
Detective Chief Inspector Cheryl Hannan, of the force’s Major Investigations Department, said: “Clare could have been saved that day by the person she trusted, she wasn’t. Her family will never know how different things could have been. Mark told lies to avoid responsibility for his actions and decisions, thankfully those lies weren’t believed.