Cornwall Council criticised in learning disabilities murder case

Cornwall Council was slammed by a judge yesterday for not being aware a man with learning disabilities was living with two people who went on to murder him.

The judge expressed “grave disquiet” that Cornwall’s adult social care services did not know 17-year-old Sarah Bullock and 30-year-old Darren Stewart were living with Steven Hoskin.

The pair were found guilty of murder at Truro Crown Court yesterday. A third man Martin Pollard, 21, was found guilty of manslaughter.

A serious case review has been set up by Cornwall’s adult protection committee, which is made up from agencies including the police and health alongside adult social care.

The review will look at the involvement of all the agencies with Hoskin, including his landlord Ocean Housing, and establish whether any of them were aware of any other people living with him and if so how they responded.

The committee will consider the findings of the six-month review at its December meeting, and ensure that any actions needed are fully implemented by relevant agencies.

Carol Tozer, director of adult social care in Cornwall, said: “We will learn all of the lessons from Mr Hoskin’s death and will take actions that are necessary, across all the agencies involved.”

Stewart will serve at least 25 years in jail, Bullock received a minimum of ten years, while Pollard received 8 years.

Related information:

Charity pushes for new laws to bolster adult protection

Essential information on learning disabilities

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