As the Old Bailey heard today, a mum had “psychotic signs” when she reportedly killed her autistic son by shoving a sponge into his mouth.
On August 16, Dylan Freeman, 10, was found dead inside his family home in Acton, West London, after his 40-year-old mother, Olga Freeman, allegedly smothered him next to his toys.
A psychiatric study alluded to in court on Wednesday determined that when she killed her son, Freeman-the wife of celebrity photographer Dean-was suffering from a “severe depressive episode with psychotic symptoms.”
Freeman was taken to the Orchard Unit, a medium-secure hospital in Ealing, after she was arrested, the court heard.
The Russian national was wearing a grey shirt when she appeared at the Old Bailey via video link on Wednesday, as she only spoke to confirm her name as she is accused of murder.
A genetic condition marked by developmental delay, including disability, small head size, poor muscles, and visibility impairment, Dylan suffered from Cohen Syndrome.
Gareth Pattison, prosecuting, said: “Under the Mental Health Act, the defendant was recently admitted to a hospital.”
“The prosecution received a psychological report from the defence yesterday from Dr David Bird.
“The defendant isn’t fit to plead at the moment, but she is likely to be fit to plead in time.”
He continued: “The defendant has recourse to the partial defense of diminished liability on the grounds that there was a significant depressive episode with psychotic symptoms at the time.”
The court was told that six months before his death, Freeman had been struggling to care for Dylan, which was determined to be caused by an airway restriction.
It was heard at a previous court date that pieces of the sponge were found inside his throat.
It was also previously revealed that, not long before she assaulted him, Freeman’s mom had been prescribed antidepressants.
Police found Dylan dead at the Cumberland Park flat on August 16 after Freeman walked into a police station, worth an estimated £544k.
An inquiry that began in August heard that before placing the sponge in his mouth, the 40-year-old gave her son a sleeping medication.
The West London Coroner’s Court was informed that she then used a bra to tie it in place and called her friend to confess.
In photography, Dylan’s father Dean Freeman is named for his photographs of celebrities such as David Beckham and the Spice Girls.
More recently, he took shots of Emily Ratajkowski and Bradley Cooper.
Robert Freeman, the snapper behind some of The Beatles’ most famous album covers, is Dean’s dad and Dylan’s grandfather.
Ahead of a plea and trial readiness hearing at the Old Bailey on January 25, 2021, Olga Freeman is expected to remain hospitalized.
Dylan was a beautiful, vibrant, inquisitive and creative child who loved to fly, visit art galleries and swim. Dean Freeman mentioned being in Spain, previously said in a statement: “Dylan was a beautiful, bright, inquisitive and artistic child.”
We have travelled widely over the years, spending such unforgettable times together in places such as Brazil, France and Spain.
“I am unable to begin to grasp his loss.”