John McGrath Inquest Identifies Police And Mental Health Failings

NHS And Police Apologise To Family Regarding Death


A verdict of unlawful killing has been handed down in relation to the death of 81-year-old Stapleford man John McGrath, with the coroner concluding that police and mental health workers should have acted sooner to prevent it.

According to the BBC, Assistant Coroner Heidi Connor said that William Barnard, the grandson of McGrath, should have been arrested in relation to an armed robbery before the stabbing.

Barnard admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility and also pleaded guilty to harming his grandmother Mabel McGrath in the same incident in 2009.

The inquest heard how there were delays in investigating an armed robbery in which Barnard was a suspect, while he had also stopped taking medication and should have been detained by mental health services sooner.

Both the NHS and Nottinghamshire Police have apologised to the family.

Anyone who believes they have suffered unlawful arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution or injuries caused by police, should contact Irwin Mitchell on 0370 1500 100 or visit our Claims Against the Police page for more information.

Expert Opinion
This is a truly horrific case and it is incredibly concerning to see the coroner identify failings in relation to how the issue was handled.

“While it is welcome that both the police and the NHS have said changes to practices have been implemented since this death, it is vital that work continues to ensure that everything possible is done to prevent any incident of this nature from occurring again.

“Sadly, we do see similar cases and act for families whose loved ones have suffered as a result of police or mental health service failings. Each incident of this nature is an important reminder that in addition to the safety of patients, the safety of family members and the general public is just as important."
Tom Fletcher, Associate

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