Is this Britain’s worst ever mother? The mum accused of giving her daughter Class A drugs


A four-year-old girl died after her own mother gave her Class A drugs to keep her quiet because she thought she was a nuisance.

Michala Pyke and her partner gave her poor little girl heroin, methadone, ketamine and other sedatives because she didn’t want her to get in the way of her relationship with her drug dealer boyfriend, a court was told.

Poppy Widdison died in June 2013 after her heart gave way while at the home of Pyke’s boyfriend John Rytting, which was described a s squalid and drug-filled.

A post-mortem carried out after her death discovered that she had been given a number of drugs for up to half a year.

Child cruelty

Both Pyke and Rytting are on trial for child cruelty. David Gordon QC, acting for the prosecution, said that the two had sent each other text messages which talked about how little Poppy had been given a “blue Smartie” before going to sleep.

The prosecution case claims that a “blue Smartie” was, in fact, the sedative diazepam, which is a blue tablet. In one message, Pyke said to Rytting: “Get them blue Smarties ready, the ones she likes.”

Hull Crown Court heard that Pyke treated her child as “something of a nuisance” who was getting in the way of her relationship with Rytting. Tests were carried out on Poppy’s hair which found that she had ingested large quantities of heroin and methadone for two to six months before she died.

While the jury was told that the drugs were not what caused her death, she had faced ill-treatment and neglect by the “grossly inappropriate” administration of drugs to her.

After the little girl died, Rytting’s property in Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire, was searched by police who discovered prescription and illegal drugs. Pyke was said to be moving from her own house, which was described as being relatively clean and tidy into Rytting’s home, which was squalid.

Both Pyke, 37, and Ryttin, 40, have pleaded guilty to child cruely by allowing her to live somewhere with drugs lying around. Pyke has also admitted another charge of child cruelty by emotional abuse.