Mick Philpott was a good father, says former mistress Lisa Willis
UNDER cross-examination, Lisa Willis was asked by Anthony Orchard QC, Mick Philpott's barrister, about television appearances the family made in 2006 and 2007.
The jury heard Philpott appeared on The Jeremy Kyle Show and a documentary made by MP Ann Widdecombe.
Mr Orchard said: "Mr Philpott was being lambasted as a benefits scrounger.
"You were seen as a shameless family. It was a horrible time, wasn't it?"
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"Yes, it was," Ms Willis said.
Mr Orchard suggested to Ms Willis that the Philpotts did not enjoy that period of time and the family received hate mail as a result of the television shows.
He went on: "Michael Philpott is a man who raises in people quite a lot of emotion.
"People either love him or hate him.
"He could be arrogant. He could be a bit of a loudmouth. He would shout his business to anyone who would listen.
"He could rub people up the wrong way.
"There are some people who like him but many who do not."
Ms Willis replied: "Yes, that's true."
Mr Orchard said: "In relation to the children, you would agree that he was a good father?"
"Yes, he was a good father," Ms Willis said.
Mr Orchard said Philpott cared about the children; he would take them to school, read with them, play football with them and take some of them fishing.
He did not let them play in the street because he cared about their safety, Mr Orchard said.
He asked Ms Willis: "He would do nothing to endanger them?"
"No," she replied.
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