Tale of racism: Boy with Kenyan roots killed by mother, stepfather in UK

Baby Logan Mwangi and his family.

Baby Logan Mwangi (left) and his father Ben Mwangi (right). Inset, Baby Logan's mother Angharad Williamson with her current husband, John Cole. Two years ago Baby Logan Mwangi was murdered by his mother and stepfather, a British court found.

Photo credit: Courtesy

What you need to know:

The court found that the body of Baby Logan Mwangi, whose Kenyan father Benjamin Mwangi works as a bookmaker in the UK, had horrific injuries when it was retrieved from the Ogmore River in Bridgend, England.

A Kenyan boy whose body was found floating on a river in Bridgend, United Kingdom, two years ago was murdered by his mother and stepfather, a British court has ruled.

The court found that the body of Baby Logan Mwangi, whose Kenyan father Benjamin Mwangi works as a bookmaker in the UK, had horrific injuries when it was retrieved from the Ogmore River in Bridgend, England, at the end of July 2020.

The body had 56 external cuts and bruises as well as internal injuries that prosecutors likened to the case of someone who had suffered a high-speed road accident.

The minor had reportedly been brutalised and tortured for months by people who were supposed to take care of him.

“When his body was examined, it was bruised, grazed and scratched from head to toe. He suffered damage to his brain, liver and stomach. His death would have been slow and painful,” reported the The Guardian.

Logan’s mother Angharad Williamson, her current husband John Cole – a man described by British media as harbouring a deep hatred of the boy due to his African roots – and a 14-year-old boy who lived with them have all been found guilty of murdering the young boy.

“Cole hated Logan’s similarity in looks to his biological father, who is of Kenyan heritage. Racism may have played a part in his attitude towards Logan,” heard the court in Wessex, England.

Logan’s father, Mwangi, met Ms Williamson through mutual friends in 2010 when she was working as a warehouse manager in Essex, South East England. They began a relationship in 2014 and had Logan on March 15, 2016.

“I was present when Logan was born and it was the happiest time of my life. I stayed with Claire (Ms Williamson’s mother) for a few weeks but I would clash quite a lot with Claire and did not think it was good for anyone, especially Logan, so I moved back to Brentwood,” Mr Mwangi told the court.

“During that period I was in regular contact with Angharad, who would call me and send me pictures of Logan. He was the cutest little boy…We were back and forth visiting each other,” recalled Mr Mwangi.

Things turned for the worst after Ms Williamson met Cole,” he added. 

Mr Cole, 40, who three women who had relationships with him before described to the court as an ‘overly controlling, domineering, violent and uneasy person, had a criminal record for burglary, assault, resisting arrest, possession of bhang and preventing the course of justice. 

“He held long-standing racist beliefs which could have been relevant to his motives in the attacks on Logan, and he even stopped him from seeing his real father and grandmother,” heard the court.

Shortly after starting a relationship with Cole, Ms Williamson called Mr Mwangi and informed him that she would not be able to continue speaking with him as her new partner “did not think it was normal” for them to still speak to each other.

Mr Mwangi would henceforth only speak to Logan via video call on weekends when the boy was staying with his grandmother Claire in 2019. It was the last time Mr Mwangi ever saw Logan alive.

Baby Logan Mwangi

Baby Logan Mwangi. His body had horrific injuries when it was retrieved from a river in Bridgend, England.

Photo credit: Courtesy

The court heard that Logan’s suffering started sometime in 2019 when his mother and stepfather decided to lock him up in a dark bedroom, denying him the food they ate and forcing him to eat only cereals and water for supper.

British media have criticised the UK government’s Social Services department for failing to rescue Logan even after it became apparent that the five-year-old was being brutalised by his family. It was heard that the boy had on several occasions come to school with unexplained injuries.

This made Logan to start stammering, wetting himself frequently and causing physical harm to himself, something his teachers reported to social workers but to no avail.

Medical officials expressed concern about Logan’s broken arm a year before his murder and they too alerted the authorities. The British government assigned a social worker to Logan’s case but he was withdrawn a month before the boy’s death, as the government no longer believed that he was facing a significant risk to his life.

Additionally, the 14-year-old boy who was found to have played a part in Logan’s murder was on many occasions found by his foster family to have knives hidden under his pillows.

“The youth repeatedly talked about how much he hated Logan and wanted him dead. He didn’t even call him Logan, he called him “the five-year-old”. Social services were told about the threats,” heard the court.

In fact, while in court, the 14-year-old suspect admitted he had a few months prior to Logan’s death thrown him down a flight of stairs, breaking his arm.

He then added that after the fall, Logan’s mother tried to physically reconfigure the broken arm by squeezing it until she heard a pop instead of rushing the injured boy to hospital.

The convicts in Baby Logan's murder

The convicts: Baby Logan's mother Angharad Williamson and her current husband, John Cole.

When asked by the court about the incident, Ms Williamson said, “We all thought he'd fallen down the stairs but it turned out the teenager pushed him down the stairs.”

Two days before Logan’s body was found, the court heard that his mother and Cole were visited by social workers and the police after the boy’s injuries and mental state was reported by his school.

Before the visit, the two had worked hard to cover up the boy’s injuries in order to convince the police that all was well but immediately they left, Cole punched Logan in the stomach while the 14-year-old suspect swept the boy off his feet with a martial arts move.

“Cole later on said the only way this boy understands is pain,” heard the court.

Two days after the visit by the police, Logan’s body was found floating on Ogmore River, a stone’s throw away from their home.