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Death of Baby P

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  • Category: Death

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Peter Connelly also known as Baby P was a British 17-months old boy who died in London in August 2007 after suffering more than 50 injuries over the eight-months period, during which he was repeatedly seen by Haringey Children’s Services, NHS Health Professionals and the Police; all who committed a catalogue of errors which led to the Death of Baby P at the hand of his mother and her sadistic boyfriend (Mr H Baker). According to the two Serious Case Review (SCR) released by the coalition and then Children Health Secretary Ed ball, which found the youngster’s ‘horrifying’ death ‘could and should’ have been prevented by the public workers charged with protecting him. Baby P’s mother (Tracey Connelly) told her social worker that she had a boyfriend and in mid-2007, she named him as her next of Kin in health records. The social worker did not ask who he was or request to meet him. Also child protection officials failed to established Baker’s identity , interview him and carry out background checks on him.

The report also stated that the social worker never thought Baby P was being harmed and considered his care to be ‘a routine, low risk case, requiring family support’. Baby P’s mother was disorganised, dirty and smelly and was without much conscience but social worker failed to confront her because she intimidated staff. Crucially, social workers accepted Connelly’s litany of lies about what happened to her, who she was living with and who had contact with her child. The report makes it clear that the warning signs were there from the start, as, just days after Peter was born, a health worker visited the home and found it to be ‘very untidy’, the case was placed in a blue folder indicating it was a cause for concern- yet he was still failed until the day he died in a blood-spattered cot in Tottenham, north east London. Throughout, health officials as well as the Police took a ‘sanguine’ view of Peter’s injuries.

Even when doctors took the view that the injuries had been inflicted deliberately, these were discounted. The police strongly believed that Baby P’s injuries were non-accidental, but did not do their duty by accepting responsibility to investigate the injuries. They also swallowed Connelly’s account of Baker’s limited involvement, which showed a lack of thoroughness of police investigations. The family G.P accepted Connelly’s lies that Baby P’s bruised easily when he examined the baby at six months. In the final days of baby P’s life a G.P said he was in a ‘sorry state’ but did not alert others, decides she cannot carry out a full check-up as the boy is ‘miserable and cranky’. A post-mortem examination later reveals Peter had probably already suffered a broken back and fracture ribs by this point.

According to the Mail on Sunday 15 March 2009, reported that details of the Serious Case Review initiated by Haringey Council had come into its possession. It stated that there were instances of mishandling by officials, missed and delayed meetings, miscommunication among officials, and a failure to follow through with decisions related to he child’s safety. It also noted among other issues that officials had not followed through with obtaining an ‘interim care order’ that would have removed Peter from his home when they had agreed that legal grounds had existed for doing so six months before he died; key officials also failed to attend a 25 July 2007 meeting intended to decide if it would be necessary to remove Peter from his mother’s mom at that time.

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