Toddler's death case review

A serious case review into the death of Torbay-born Keanu Williams, 2, who was beaten to death by his mother Rebecca Shuttleworth has been published. More than 10 social workers and health workers have been sacked or resigned over his death.

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National

Murdered toddler 'became invisible to the authorities'

Two-year-old Keanu Williams became "invisible" to the authorities while being subjected to months of cruelty, a damning report has found.

The Serious Case Review into the toddler's murder concluded that the professionals involved in his care failed to meet even basic standards of good practice.

A police image illustrating some of the 37 injuries identified on the body of Keanu Williams.
A police image illustrating some of the 37 injuries identified on the body of Keanu Williams. Credit: West Midlands Police/PA Wire

Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board's independent report said child protection workers in various agencies "collectively failed" to prevent Keanu's death.

Read: Toddler had 37 separate injuries when he died

National

Panel: Toddler's death 'could not have been predicted'

The panel conducting the Serious Case Review into Keanu Williams' murder agreed his death "could not have been predicted."

However, the report added that in view of his mother's background history, "It could have been predicted that Keanu was likely to suffer significant harm and should have been subject of a child protection plan on at least two occasions to address issues of neglect and physical harm."

Keanu Williams' mother Rebecca Shuttleworth was jailed for life in June.
Keanu Williams' mother Rebecca Shuttleworth was jailed for life in June. Credit: David Jones/PA Wire

Keanu, who was born in Torbay, died in Birmingham in January 2011 after suffering a skull fracture and a severe abdominal injury caused by his mother, Rebecca Shuttleworth.

The report made eight recommendations to the organisations involved in Keanu's care, with the review's author saying various agencies were guilty of a "loss of focus" after a core assessment made shortly before the toddler's first birthday.

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National

Murdered toddler 'failed by every agency'

A Serious Case Review into the death of a two-year-old boy who was beaten to death by his mother has found Keanu Williams died "because there was failure across every agency to see, hear and respond to him in the context of what he was experiencing at any one point in time."

Keanu Williams was two years old when he was beaten to death. Credit: Handout

Rebecca Shuttleworth, 25, is serving life in prison with a minimum term of 18 years for beating her son Keanu to death.

Read more on this story at ITV News Central's website

National

'Opportunity after opportunity to intervene was missed'

The Serious Case Review into Keanu Williams' death found the toddler died "because people missed opportunity after opportunity to intervene, and do something decisive to ensure he was safe and properly cared for."

Keanu Williams was two years old when he was beaten to death by his mother.
Keanu Williams was two years old when he was beaten to death by his mother. Credit: West Midlands Police

The review, which was undertaken by the Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB), stated that although some staff "did their best" for the two-year-old boy, others "did not comply with required practice, processes and procedures."

"Those staff have already been held to account for this by individual agencies," Jane Held, chairwoman of the BSCB said.

Central

NCB respond to toddler death serious case review

The National Children's Bureau (NCB) have responded to the serious case review into the death of two-year-old Keanu Williams who was beaten to death by his mother in 2011.

This case starkly demonstrates the unintended consequences of recent reforms to child protection; an overly bureaucratic process; lack of individual responsibility; increasingly complex organisational relationships and responsibilities; and no one advocating in the interests of the child.

It is particularly worrying that the review found that no conversations were held with Keanu to find out what he was feeling.

No child at risk should ever be only seen and not heard. We urgently need to review how best to support children within the child protection system - especially the very young ones - to ensure their voices are listened to at every opportunity.

– Dr Hilary Emery, Chief Executive of the National Children’s Bureau

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