Inquest into Gareth Myatt’s death begins this week

The inquest into the death of 15-year-old Gareth Myatt who died after being restrained in Rainsbrook Secure Training Centre in Northamptonshire will begin this week.

The 15-year-old was serving a 12-month detention and training order at Rainsbrook STC near Rugby when he died in April 2004.

Following Myatt’s death, Lord Carlile QC chaired an independent inquiry into restraint which found that children in custody were regularly subjected to “demeaning and dehumanising” strip-searching, physical restraint and long periods of isolation.

The inquiry, published by the Howard League for Penal Reform, called for independent scrutiny of restraint incidents and an end to the use of prison segregation units for children. It also called for a ban on handcuffing young offenders following evidence that this was being used “inappropriately” to restrain inmates in secure training centres.

There was no prosecution over Gareth Myatt’s death as the Crown Prosecution Service said there was “insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction against any individual or organisation”.

The inquest formally starts on Wednesday and is expected to last four weeks.

Evidence will be heard from Gareth’s mother, the officers involved in the restraint, medical experts and senior management at Rainsbrook and the Youth Justice Board.

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