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Child w Executive Summary

Child w Executive Summary

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Published by Bren

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Published by: Bren on Jun 24, 2010
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Leicester, Leicestershire & RutlandLocal Safeguarding Children BoardExecutive SummaryChild ‘W’
Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Safeguarding Children Board
Executive Summary Serious Case ReviewChild W
1. Introduction
1.1 A Serious Case Review was undertaken after Child W, who was 2 years old,was killed by his father. Mr W immediately admitted causing his son’s death and acriminal investigation followed. This resulted in Mr W being charged with murder,to which he eventually pleaded guilty. Mr W was sentenced to life imprisonment.The judge ordered that he serve a minimum term in prison of just over 16 years.The Serious Case Review could not be completed until after Mr W’s trial.1.2 This Executive Summary reflects the findings of the Serious Case Reviewwhich was carried out in line with government guidance. Local SafeguardingChildren Boards (LSCBs) must consider whether to carry out a review when achild is killed by a parent. The focus of this review was the history of mentalhealth problems of Child W’s parents, the domestic violence in their relationshipand the impact of their difficulties on the care of their son.1.3 Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Safeguarding Children Board iscommitted to learning lessons from reviews in order to develop and improve howchildren are safeguarded through the work of professionals and agencies and theway in which they work together. It is equally important to learn from good practiceand to build on this. The review has tried to identify any changes which need to bemade for the future.
2 . The Serious Case Review
2.1 Each agency that had worked with Child W and his family was asked to do areview, called an Individual Management Review. The reviewer had to besomeone who had not worked directly with the family or been the line manager ofany worker who had been involved. The reviewers read all the records relating tothe family and spoke to some of the workers and their managers. The reviewer’sresponsibility was to be thorough, objective and critical in order to identify practicewhich did not meet the required standards as well as good practice. It was alsoimportant to understand why certain actions were taken and decisions made. Thereviewer then produced a chronology, (what happened and when), of theagency’s involvement and wrote a report of their findings.2.2 The Serious Case Review Group, made up of representatives of theSafeguarding Children Board and the Individual Management Reviewers,considered all the reviews and analysed the professional practice and the way inwhich the agencies worked together. The group was joined by an independentperson, the Overview Author, who was not employed by any of the agencies.Their responsibility was to look critically at the reviews and work with the group todraw conclusions from the information and analysis and then to write an OverviewReport. The Children and Young People’s Service, Housing Services, the Policeand the Health Services were represented on the Serious Case Review Group.
3. Background information
3.1 Mr W and Ms W1 both had childhoods where they experienced disruption andunhappiness. As adults they had mental health problems and met whilst receivingmental health services. Ms W1’s children from her marriage went to live with theirfather and his family when she was particularly unwell but she was able to keep intouch with them and for many years they have had regular contact with her. MsW1 has continued to receive treatment and support from her GP and the mentalhealth services as well as treatment for a number of physical health problems. MrW was discharged from the mental health services and then had no furthercontact.3.2 Mr W and Ms W1 wanted to have a child and were living together by the timeChild W was born. Ms W1 had spoken to professionals on occasions about MrW’s controlling and abusive behaviour towards her but at the time of Child W’sbirth there was nothing which caused the agencies concern.3.3 When Child W was 6 months old Ms W1 separated from Mr W. She spoke ofhim getting drunk and that his behaviour was threatening towards her andmembers of her family. She said there were concerns about his conduct towardsan ex-partner’s child from a previous relationship. Ms W1 described Mr W ashaving some obsessional worries about his son, leading to very controllingbehaviour towards him.3.4 Ms W1 and Child W were in contact with the Children and Young People’sService and the police at the point of the separation. They lived in hostelaccommodation and then supported housing before moving to their own tenancy.They were in close contact with housing support services. Mr W remained intouch with Ms W1 and Child W throughout. He began to visit and then stayregularly, so that he was spending a significant proportion of each week withthem.3.5 The family lived in Sure Start areas both before the separation and after theyleft the hostel. Health visiting services and, later, other child and family supportservices were provided through the Sure Start Children’s Centres. There was briefcontact with the Children and Young People’s Service and the police after Ms W1had taken an overdose in response to problems she was having with Mr W andagain with the Children and Young People’s Service when Child W was assessedfor a place at a nursery.3.6 The only serious concern about Child W was that he was very slow to be ableto bear his own weight, to sit and then to walk. He was referred to the communitypaediatrician who gave advice and after some time he caught up in his physicaldevelopment. Ms W1 had not told the workers from the agencies in touch with herand her son the full extent of Mr W’s contact with them. They thought that Child Wwent to a family member for contact with his father once a week. Ms W1 didspeak on occasions of Mr W’s intimidating and violent behaviour towards her. Shealso told workers that he insisted Child W should stay in his buggy and not be puton the floor.

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