Now, there are plenty of fairy tales featuring wicked stepmothers. What usually happens is they’re outsmarted and made to pay for their cruel treatment of their stepchildren. I think we can all appreciate some magical justice, right? But in this extreme only upsetting case from the UK, events went way darker than Disney and even more nightmarish than an old-fashioned fairy story. This may be one of the darkest cases we’ve ever covered on this channel, and that’s saying a lot. Sadly, there’s also no fairy godmother to make things all better, so be prepared for some nasty details, okay? Are you ready?
In mid-December of 2021, a female prisoner in the UK had to be isolated from the other prisoners for her safety. The authorities realized she was at serious risk. The other inmates had added salt to her food and made it very clear that she wasn’t safe in there with them. The British prison system gave her vulnerable prisoner status because what she had done was so awful that she was at serious risk of getting attacked or worse. But what crime could have been so terrible that even other criminals in a prison would want to deliberately victimize her?
Well, when you see and hear the horrific things that she and her partner got up to, I guarantee you won’t feel even the slightest bit sorry for her current situation. Especially not when you see who they hurt. Arthur Hughes was a kindergartener who loved the Gruffalo books, soccer, and superheroes. For the first four years of his life, everything seemed to be relatively normal. But his childhood was about to become violent and disturbing. In February 2019, his birth mother had been convicted of manslaughter for ending the life of her partner.
So after that truly scary event, Arthur was sent to live with his birth father, Thomas Hughes. His mom did affect Arthur’s mental health, and he often behaved badly. He was kind of obsessed with the idea of his first Daddy leaving him and also got fixated on all kinds of weapons. That sounds like an understandable yet upsetting reaction to what happened, but he did seem to be slowly recovering from it. By March 2020, the social worker had noticed he calmed down a lot and things seemed to be getting better for him. But when the UK closed down because of the virus in late March 2020, Arthur’s life abruptly became a whole lot worse.
Back in February 2019, Thomas Hughes had started dating a woman called Emma Tuscan. You know, that nice, heavily isolated lady who we mentioned right at the start? Well, when the March 2020 lockdown began, Thomas and little Arthur all moved into Emma’s place in Solihull, which is in the West Midlands of the UK. It’s a pretty expansive area, definitely not somewhere you’d expect something terrible to happen, and especially not to a sweetheart like Arthur. So in March 2020, little Arthur’s life got so much worse, and nobody could protect him. In April 2020, Arthur’s grandma on his mum’s side noticed a bad bruise on her grandson’s shoulder. It made her worried enough that she called social services to try and get help for him. But Emma and Thomas used the time before the appointment to make their home life look like they were both normal people.
It was the one day that they allowed Arthur out to play in the back garden so that he was happy with his circumstances.
But after all, the authorities had been fooled. The doors slammed completely shut on any visitors to the house. Emma and Thomas completely stopped Arthur’s grandma or anyone else who might have cared to help him from seeing him.
They cut off contact with everyone. And Arthur. We loved him to bits. We never saw him again.
Arthur also never returned to school, even after the restrictions were lifted for a while. And then on June 16, 2020, the ambulance services received this horrifying emergency call from Emma Tufton.
Ambulance services patient breathing, balance.
He’s been treating us all off. She’s thrown south on the floor.
He’s headed to the floor.
I’m trying to pick him up in the process. He’s headquartered me in the process.
He’s breathing. He’s barely breathing. He’s lost just at the minute.
You hear how she’s blaming a kindergarten for how he treats them. She doesn’t sound worried about him at all. She’s blaming him for everything, because, as you’ll see, she refuses to accept the blame for this herself. And everything Emma said in the phone call to the ambulance was a massive pack of lies. Unfortunately, nobody would get there in time to save little Arthur. When Arthur had passed away from his injuries, the police immediately started questioning Emma Tuscan and Thomas Hughes outside the house. You notice how Emma still tries to make a little kid sound like a villain.
Find yourself the radiator.
He hits me and kicked me in the process of trying to get him back on the sink and stuff.
He’s then gone on all fours on the floor, and I’ve told him to get up.
He was weak because of what they were doing to him. More on that later. But at least he fought back.
While he could mash these house faces, he battled his dad. He hit me when the tort came off the floor from head on the floor. He had put him.
And of course, even if she couldn’t visit, Arthur’s grandmother had constantly tried to warn the authorities that something wasn’t right. She couldn’t believe it was happening.
They’re wicked evil. There’s no word for them, especially your child, who you’ve got a duty of care to protect.