UK & World News

  • 28 November 2012, 23:42

Gas Blast: Man Admits Two-Year-Old's Killing

A man has admitted the manslaughter of a two-year-old boy killed in a gas explosion at his home.

Jamie Heaton died while watching TV when the blast levelled several homes in Buckley Street, Shaw, in Oldham.

Andrew Partington, an unemployed father of six, admitted causing the explosion when he let his house fill with gas overnight.

The 27-year-old suffered 40% burns and a broken back in the blast and pleaded guilty via videolink from prison during a hearing at Manchester Crown Court.

The explosion in June "obliterated" Partington's rented terrace house and two neighbouring homes, with the rest of the row and surrounding streets also left devastated.

Neighbours found Jamie's body as they searched the debris of his wrecked home.

The boy's parents sat in the public gallery holding hands for the brief hearing.

They were flanked by police officers and other members of their family, who wiped away tears as the defendant admitted his guilt.

As well as manslaughter, Partington pleaded guilty to eight charges of destroying neighbouring houses. He was remanded in custody until February 11 when he will be sentenced.

Judge Gilbart also ordered a psychological assessment of Partington before he is sentenced, to assess his dangerousness.

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