Rosdeep Adekoya sparked a huge search after reporting three-year-old Mikaeel missing, but has admitted battering her son to death
Adekoya admitted repeatedly punching her son and causing his body to hit against a hard object or inflicting blunt injuries on his head and body between January 12 and 15. The court heard she had “lost her temper” after Mikaeel was repeatedly sick following a trip to Nando’s.She then wrapped Mikaeel’s body in a duvet cover, put it in a suitcase and drove to Dunvegan Avenue in Kirkcaldy, Fife, where she hid the case under a bush in woods behind a house. She later called 999 to report her son missing to police, telling officers he got out of bed and climbed on a stool to unlock the front door of his home. Advocate depute Alex Prentice told the court: “The basis for the plea tendered being accepted is that the Crown accepts that the accused had no intention to kill Mikaeel and that the assault perpetrated upon him, although severe, fell short if the wicked recklessness required for murder.” Adekoya was said to be “distraught” when Mikaeel was first reported missing, with a major ground, air and sea search was launched for the little boy.She told detectives she last saw her son going to bed at about 9pm on Wednesday, January 15 and was missing when she and her four other children – including Mikaeel’s twin sister – woke the following day at 7.15am. Early theories about his disappearance ranged from the possibility the youngster had left of his own accord, to speculation about potential custody issues involving the boy’s father.
Inundated by offers of help from worried neighbours, police began to form search parties to comb the area, with hundreds turning up to volunteer. Many were parents themselves, eager to help in a situation described by one as “every mum’s worst nightmare”. But as the second day of the search wore on with no confirmed sightings, the sense of unease surrounding the circumstances of Mikaeel’s disappearance began to grow. It emerged that he had not been seen at his nursery since the Christmas break because he had been ill, and later that evening officers leading the investigation said publicly they were exploring the possibility he had been the victim of a criminal act. In the early hours of Saturday everyone’s worst fears were confirmed – Mikaeel’s body had been found in Fife shortly before midnight and a person had been detained. That person was soon revealed to beAdekoya, who would by the end of the day be arrested and charged over the death of her son.
Hundreds attended a memorial service held for Mikaeel at Muirhouse St Andrew’s Church, while flowers, soft toys and candles piled up near the family’s home.
Crowds also turned out to remember Mikaeel during vigils at Cramond Beach in Edinburgh and Pathhead Sands in Fife – two communities divided by water but united by the tragedy of his death.