Poppi Worthington death

  1. MP Woodcock meets ministers to push for 'Poppi's Law'

    The Barrow and Furness MP John Woodcock is meeting government ministers this afternoon to try to block legal loopholes which he says left the toddler Poppi Worthington unprotected in the months before her death.

    Poppi Worthington

    Poppi died, in circumstances that have never been fully explained, at her home in 2012, and investigations afterwards showed that although her mother had a long history of contact with children's services, health visitors and social services were not aware of her vulnerability.

    Mr Woodcock is proposing a "Poppi's Law", which would require the relevant history of pregnant women and their partners to be visible to health visitors and pre-natal NHS staff.

    He says this would allow social workers to make more informed decisions about the level of protection to give children born into families with a history of vulnerability.

    Ahead of the meeting, Mr Woodcock said having ministers from three government departments coming together to hear the case showed the government was taking the issues seriously.

    Quote Message: The circumstances of Poppi’s death shocked the nation and bitterly hurt our community, this is an obvious and achievable common-sense change to strengthen child protection in her memory.” from John Woodcock Indepdendent MP for Barrow and Furness
    John WoodcockIndepdendent MP for Barrow and Furness
  2. Judge publishes ruling against Poppi's father

    A High Court judge has published the detailed reasons why he refused the father of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington, permission to have parts of the coroner's findings removed from the record of the inquest into her death.

    Paul Worthington's legal team said the coroner concluded that Poppi suffocated while sleeping in the same bed as her father, and that the sexual assault was not a cause of her death

    Therefore, lawyers for Mr Worthington told a High Court trial, there should be no reference in the coroner's findings to the sexual assault because it was not relevant.

    Cumbria's senior coroner David Roberts, who presided at the inquest this time last year, said the assault by Mr Worthington was part of the "factual matrix" that led to Poppi's death, and the three judges sitting in the hearing agreed

    In the judgement published in full today, Lord Justice Higginbottom says the assault finding "was essential to explain why Poppi was in the unsafe sleeping environment which caused her death," and the record would be deficient without it.

    Poppi Worthington
  3. Poppi's mother 'relieved' as judge refuses father's appeal

    The mother of Poppi Worthington has welcomed a court ruling that the record of the inquest into her daughter's death should not be changed.

    The coroner's report said the cause of death in 2012 was probably asphyxiation, but also said she had, on the balance of the evidence, been sexually assaulted before her death.

    The toddler's father, Paul Worthington, claimed this should not have been part of the findings, but the High Court ruled against him.

    Poppi Worthington

    Fiona McGhie, a lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Poppi's mother, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said on her behalf:

    Quote Message: The years since Poppi died have been a complete nightmare for her.
    Quote Message: She was very disappointed that he tried to challenge the coroner rather than accepting his findings but is relieved at today's decision."
  4. Poppi Worthington: Father loses bid to have inquest changed

    A High Court judge has rejected a bid by the father of Poppi Worthington to change the official record of the inquest into her death by removing any mention of sexual assault.

    At an earlier hearing, Paul Worthington's lawyers claimed a coroner had "overstepped the mark" at the inquest into the 13-month-old's death in 2012.

    Paul Worthington

    They said that when David Roberts (pictured below), senior coroner for Cumbria, officially recorded the circumstances of her death following the inquest in January, he included matters that were not the cause of death.

    However, Mrs Justice Farbey, sitting at the High Court in Manchester, ruled the coroner's approach "cannot be faulted" and, in a 17-page legal judgement, ordered Mr Worthington, who is on legal aid, should pay the court costs, subject to his ability to pay.

    David Roberts
  5. Poppi: Coroner should not have included abuse, says lawyer

    Lawyers for Paul Worthington, the father of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington who died six years ago in unexplained circumstances, have told a High Court judge the coroner at an inquest last year included the long-running allegation that he had sexually abused his daughter, when he should have not mentioned it.

    Paul Worthington

    This morning Mr Worthington's barrister, Leslie Thomas QC, said the conclusion of the 87-page ruling by Cumbria's senior coroner, David Roberts, referred to sexual abuse, although he had ruled that the cause of death was not abuse, but asphyxiation as she slept in her father's bed.

    "He has overstepped the mark," said Mr Thomas. "What's included in box three are matters that did not cause death."

    Samantha Leek QC, representing the coroner, said the abuse was part of the "wider factual matrix" giving rise to her death and Mr Thomas was trying to restrict the record of inquest to the immediate medical cause of death.

    "It would be completely artificial to leave that out, it was the central issue in the inquest."

    The judge, Mr Justice Hickenbottom told the lawyers he would reserve judgment until a later date.

  6. Poppi Worthington: Father starts new legal challenge

    The father of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington, who was said by a judge and a Coroner to have probably sexually abused her before she died, is applying for a judicial review.

    Poppi's death in 2012 at the age of 13 months has never been satisfactorily explained and was the subject of a lengthy second inquest a year ago.

    Poppi Worthington

    Paul Worthington, who's living in hiding, has never been charged with a criminal offence and denies any wrongdoing.

    Today in Manchester he began a judicial challenge to some of the evidence presented at the inquest, with the first session being taken up with a technical explanation of the claim.

  7. PCC says 'everything possible' done to learn Poppi lessons

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    Ellis Butcher

    Cumbria's Police and Crime Commissioner has told a meeting that "everything possible" has been done to avoid making mistakes like those in the investigation into the death of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington.

    Peter McCall

    Peter McCall presented a report today to the committee of county councillors that scrutinises his work.

    He said: "We are dealing with people and people can make mistakes, but I think it's fair to say that everything humanly possible has been done."

    Mr McCall said as a result of the errors made in the investigation, Cumbria Police had carried out 250 recommendations and had been thoroughly inspected in 2016 and 2017.

  8. Police chief reports on Poppi 'lessons learned'

    Bob Cooper

    Political reporter, BBC Cumbria

    The progress made by Cumbria Police since its bungled investigation into the death of Poppi Worthington will be discussed by councillors today.

    Poppi Worthington

    Poppi Worthington died aged 13 months in Barrow in 2012, in circumstances that have never been fully explained.

    A High Court judge concluded she was sexually assaulted by her father Paul before her death but he denies this and neither he nor anyone else was ever charged over her death, and there were serious failings in the police investigation.

    Since then, Cumbria Police has made progress in addressing those shortcomings and making sure mistakes are not repeated, according to the county's Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner Peter McCall, in a report to county councillors on the Police and Crime Panel later today.

  9. BreakingPoppi: Police say father's laptop 'showed no crime'

    Police say they have finished examining a laptop seized during the inquiry into the death of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington and found no evidence of criminal activity.

    The inquest into Poppi's death, who died suddenly in unexplained circumstances in 2012, had been told that her father, Paul Worthington, spent time looking at an adult pornography website on the night of her death, but his laptop was not traced at the time.

    It was recovered earlier this year, and a man was arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender. He has now been told he will face no further action.

    The police statement said the laptop "has been subject to meticulous forensic physical and digital examination by accredited forensic examiners in accordance with national best practice".

    Poppi Worthington
  10. BreakingPolice examine laptop in Poppi Worthington investigation

    Police say a laptop recovered in the course of their continuing investigations into the death of the Barrow toddler Poppi Worthington is being examined to see whether it can help throw light on the events surrounding her death.

    Poppi died, in circumstances that have never been explained, in 2012, and both a High Court judge and a coroner have said they believe she may have been sexually assaulted by her father Paul.

    Mr Worthington had told police that he had looked at pornography on a laptop on the night she died, and officers established the equipment was given away and then thought to be lost, but he refused to answer questions about this at the inquest.

    Poppi Worthington
    Quote Message: Officers have recovered a number of items, including a laptop."
    Quote Message: The laptop is subject to meticulous forensic examination to determine if it is relevant to potential enquiries concerning Poppi Worthington.” from Cumbria Police
    Cumbria Police
  11. Minister agrees to new meeting over Poppi safeguards

    The Government's agreed to hold talks about possible new measures to protect children after the case of Poppi Worthington, the 13-month-old girl from Barrow who died six years ago.

    A coroner found that she was probably sexually assaulted by her father, and then suffocated in his bed, although Paul Worthington has always denied harming his daughter and has never been prosecuted.

    The Barrow MP John Woodock asked the Home Office minister Victoria Atkins to consider extending new safeguards.

    Quote Message: If the child protection information sharing project was able to keep details of vulnerable mothers-to-be as well as children, Poppi Worthington would have been known to social services before she died. Has she had time to consider this shortcoming and will she put it right?" from John Woodcock MP for Barrow and Furness
    John WoodcockMP for Barrow and Furness
    Quote Message: I'd be very happy to meet the honourable gentleman to discuss this because it is an important point he raised." from Victoria Adams Home Office minister
    Victoria AdamsHome Office minister
    Poppi Worthington
  12. BreakingNew arrest 'over laptop' in Poppi Worthington inquiry

    A Barrow man has been arrested as police continue to investigate the death of Poppi Worthington.

    Cumbria police said he was held for a drug offence and on suspicion of assisting an offender.

    It added that the matter "relates to a statement previously made to officers investigating the death of Poppi Worthington concerning the location of a laptop".

    Poppi Worthington

    The inquest into the death of Poppi Worthington, last November, was told her father Paul had spent time the night before she died looking at pornography on a laptop which had not been traced.

    Several national newspapers named the 39-year-old as Wayne Roebuck, a former neighbour of Paul Worthington.

    Police would not confirm a name, but said the man had now been released as the investigation continues.

    Last week the Crown Prosecution Service announced it would not review its decision not to prosecute Mr Worthington for any offence over the circumstances of his daughter's death.

  13. Poppi Worthington: John Woodcock to contact Home Secretary

    Barrow's Labour MP John Woodcock has issued this statement in response to the news that there will be no further review into the death of toddler Poppi Worthington.

    In January, coroner David Roberts said the 13-month-old was sexually assaulted by her father, Paul, before her death in December 2012 from asphyxia.

    The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said no new evidence "capable of affecting decisions not to prosecute" had emerged at the inquest.

    Mr Woodcock said: “The re-referral to the CPS after the second inquest was necessary but this conclusion always felt inevitable given how much evidence was lost or not collected by the police after Poppi died.

    “This decision does at least mean the Home Secretary has no barrier to taking forward steps to restore confidence in our police force. I will be contacting her again once this immediate crisis triggered by the Russian Salisbury incident has settled.”

    Poppi Worthington