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The fight for justice against corruption is never easy. It never has been and never will be. It exacts a toll on our self, our families, our friends, and especially our children. In the end, I believe, as in many individual cases, the price we pay is well worth holding on to our dignity.

 

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I think the BBC, Sky and all the rest of the crap UK TV news channels are suffering from some sort of 'PC Phobia'. After all they accuse us of suffering a mental illness (Phobia) if you say anything against Homosexuals, Transvestites, Feminists, the Royal Family or even Sir Mo Farah who now wants to be known as Sir Mohamed by the way.

 

Chelsea Brown aged 2

Derbyshire social services
System failed a child at risk
March 7, 2001
BBC News

The death of Chelsea Brown has again called into question the intervention of social services in cases where children are known to be at risk.

'Evil' father Robert Brown was given a life sentence on Tuesday for what police have described as one of the "worst cases of child abuse they have ever seen".

The two-year-old had been tortured and shaken to death by a father who had a history of violence towards children.

The tragic fate of Chelsea has echoes of eight-year-old Anna Climbie, from Tottenham, north London, who suffered horrific abuse at the hands of her great aunt and her partner.

When the pair were both received life sentences in January, there were calls for an urgent review of the social service system to ensure it could never happen again.

Tragically, for Chelsea, it did.

Derbyshire's director of social services, Bruce Buckley, acknowledged that his staff made errors in the case.

"The workers were concerned and that is why they were visiting regularly but clearly on this occasion we did not make the right decisions," he said.

Warnings

Chelsea was considered at risk from her father as soon as she was born, and was immediately put on the child protection register.

But despite visiting the family at least 27 times in just over three months, the authorities decided it was safe to leave her with her father and mother Maria Brown, of Kirk Hallam, Derbyshire.

Neighbours said they warned social services that Chelsea was at risk after hearing Brown's outbursts of temper and the child's crying.

Stephen Baker told the BBC: "The only retort we got was 'if you hear anything again give us another ring' and that was as far as it went."

Another neighbour Bob Kemp said: "Someone should have picked up on it, end of story. To me it was totally preventable."

History of violence

Even after a doctor suspected abuse when she noted bruises on Chelsea, the child was still not removed from her parents' care, Nottingham Crown Court heard.

Just over three weeks later Chelsea was dead after she was violently shaken by her father.

Brown had a string of convictions, including actual bodily harm for slapping his 16-month-old nephew and another when he dragged him through the street.

In February 1998 he was placed on probation for threatening to kill his own mother and a social worker.

Despite his violent background, Derbyshire social services decided to allow Chelsea to return to her parents after her paternal grandmother said she could no longer care for the girl.

"At the time Chelsea went back no-one could have predicted the outcome based on Mr Brown's previous behaviour," said Mr Buckley.

The couple by then had another daughter, 17-month-old Courtney, who Brown tried to blame for causing some of the injuries to Chelsea.

Hilary Owen, the author of an independent report into the case, told a press conference on Tuesday that Brown had been able to mislead professional about the cause of many of Chelsea's injuries.

She added: "The death of any child is always a cause for great sadness and the circumstances surrounding Chelsea's death are particularly tragic.

"There was increased concern about Chelsea in the time she was living with her parents and removal was an active consideration in the last few weeks of her life."

Mr Buckley refused to discuss whether the principal social worker in the case, Norma McDevitt, would be disciplined.

Authorities are agreed that the many lessons learnt from the loss of Chelsea Brown and Anna Climbie should this time guarantee that no child dies in such tragic and violent circumstances again.