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A barrister for Hollie Dance, 46, and Paul Battersbee, 56, yesterday argued it had not been proved “beyond reasonable doubt” that Archie Battersbee was “dead.”
And Mrs Justice Arbuthnot – who last week ruled doctors could lawfully withdraw treatment – yesterday gave them permission to keep fighting. She said appeal judges had never considered a standard of proof issue in relation to “declaration of death” and that was a “compelling reason” why they should.
Edward Devereux QC, the parents’ barrister, had claimed the conclusion Archie was dead had been made on a balance of probabilities.
He argued it should be made on a “beyond reasonable doubt” basis.
Doctors treating the schoolboy at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London, had told the judge they think he is “brain-stem dead” and should be disconnected from a ventilator. His parents say his heart is still beating and want treatment continued.
Hollie, found her son unconscious at home in Southend, Essex, in April. The family believe he was taking part in a “blackout challenge.”
Eight other grounds for appeal were dismissed for having “no merit.”
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