John Cole and Angharad Williamson both claimed to be excellent parents, but witnesses painted a different picture.
Here, the PA news agency looks at their path from the “perfect little family” to being convicted of the murder of five-year-old Logan Mwangi.
– Angharad Williamson
Angharad Williamson has gone from private schoolgirl to child murderer in little over two decades – forever known as a mother who killed her own child.
Growing up in Essex with a twin brother and younger brother, she was the daughter of a stockbroker and attended a fee-paying primary school before going to secondary school.
Her parents separated when she was a child and she achieved 12 GCSEs at school before studying for a BTEC in moving image at college.
As a teenager she volunteered for a multiple sclerosis charity and worked part-time at Carphone Warehouse.
She later joined Phones 4u and became a manager at one its stores in east London until the firm collapsed in 2014 and she lost her job.
Shortly afterwards, she turned to crime and was charged with two counts of theft after making unauthorised payments on her mother’s credit card.
On one occasion, with a boyfriend, she stole her mother’s car and was punished in court with a community order and unpaid work.
Shortly after that, Williamson met Benjamin Mwangi and by June 2015 the couple were expecting a child.
Logan was born in March 2016, but his parents’ relationship soon floundered.
Later that year she got together with Jordan Hunt, a soldier, and they married in August 2017.
The relationship turned violent and by January 2019 the marriage was over.
Months later, Williamson moved with Logan to a council flat in Bridgend and soon met John Cole in a local pub.
Despite Cole being in a relationship with someone else, Williamson fell pregnant.
Williamson told the jury they were a “perfect little family”, but she claimed the relationship changed when Logan’s father resumed contact with his son.
After Logan’s death, Williamson told detectives she was scared of Cole because he had claimed to have served in the SAS.
Cole also said he was subject to an indeterminate sentence of Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP) and could “find her” wherever she went.
Williamson was described as loud, with a tendency to use foul language and switch moods easily.
Her mother Clare, who sat for most of the trial in the public gallery and for a time was seen reading Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club, said her daughter had been “dramatic” since she was a child.
Throughout most of the trial, Williamson sobbed from the dock and repeatedly called Cole a “liar”, imploring him to “tell the truth” while giving evidence.
It was revealed she was an avid watcher of YouTube videos on blackhead removal and Dr Pimple Popper and had watched more than 300 clips between October 2019 and August 2021.
As a mother, to many she appeared loving, but with a tendency to be “overbearing” or “overprotective”.
Others said they observed her shouting at her children, and at times seemed ambivalent to Cole’s harsh treatment of Logan.
– John Cole
Martial arts fan John Cole told people he had served in the SAS.
In reality, during his 20s Cole was associated with the National Front and was known to be “very racist”.
Cole, who grew up in Rugby, Warwickshire, claimed to have put his racist life behind him but those who knew him said he called his stepson Logan Mwangi “Cocopop”.
Once together with Williamson, he is said to have stopped Logan seeing his father – jealously believing Ben Mwangi was having an affair with the boy’s mother.
Friends said Cole told them he did not like Logan and witnessed him making the young boy do press-ups to teach him a lesson, stand in the naughty corner for extensive periods of time, and making him watch others eat takeaway while he was only given cereal.
One friend, Jodie Symmonds, said she heard Cole call Logan “Cocopop”, a term which other people said Cole had used as a racist slur towards mixed race people in the past.
Cole also encouraged his co-accused, the 14-year-old boy, to assault Logan using martial arts manoeuvres he had learnt.
Now 40, Cole was said to be interested in martial arts, Marvel superhero films and playing the Xbox.
He has a number of previous convictions including for robbery, blackmail, witness intimidation and three previous offences of perverting the course of justice.