Mick Philpott told police officer she was ‘gorgeous’

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A police officer told a jury that when she came across Mick Philpott at hospital she felt uncomfortable at the light-hearted tone of his opening remark.

PC Joanne Halford asked him what he was doing there and he replied: ‘I’ve come to see you gorgeous.’

It was a week after the disastrous house fire which had killed six of his children.

The former Mansfield man and father of 17 was there with another man.

The officer said the other man asked her if she knew who his companion was – then told her he was the father of the six children who died in the Derby house fire.

Asked by counsel what she made of the remark, PC Halford said she took it as a ‘badge of honour.’

Philpott, 56, his wife Mairead, 31, and family friend Paul Mosley, 46, plead not guilty to six counts of manslaughter.

It is alleged a plan to start a fire then frame Philpott’s former mistress Lisa Willis during a custody battle was botched.

Another witness, Claire Smith, a residential support worker at a children’s home, told Nottingham Crown Court she grew up in Allenton, Derby, and was close to Mairead’s family.

She later visited Mairead and Philpott at their home in Victory Road and was a guest at their evening wedding reception.

She went to hospital as soon as she heard about the fire. A group of people were gathered outside A and E. Mairead, still in her dressing gown, was crying ‘My babies, my babies,’ and the witness gave her a hug.

Mick Philpott and Paul Mosley went down the side of the hospital together out of sight.

Why would some one want to go and talk to a friend for half an hour when they’ve lost five children and a sixth is fighting for its life, she wondered.

‘It struck me as odd.’

She said later Mick Philpott lifted his top, pointed to grazes and said ‘This is where I tried to get my kids out.’

The trial continues.