The tragic life and death of Peter Connolly.

Updated: Mar 27


Peter Connolly
Peter Connolly | Source: The Sun

Peter Connolly is also known as "Baby P" or "Child A". He was a British 17-month-old baby boy. He died in 2007, suffering from more than 50 injuries over an 8-month long period. During this time he was seen repeatedly (over 60 times) by the London Borough of Haringey Children's Services and the National health service (NHS).



Life

Tracey Connolly
Tracey Connolly | Source: The Guardian

Tracey Connelly gave birth to a healthy baby boy on March 1st, 2006 at the North Middlesex University Hospital. Peter's father has not been named for legal reasons and is only known as "KC"


But what we do know is that Tracey Connelly's boyfriend Steven Barker moved in with her and baby Peter. Tracey Connolly and her baby were living in Finsbury Park, North London when Connolly's boyfriend Steven Barker moved in.





Steven Barker
Steven Barker | Source: The Telegraph

Barker was a self-confessed Nazi, and during police investigations, they found Nazi memorabilia as well as hunting knives and martial arts equipment in the flat. Baby P's name was revealed after the conclusion of a subsequent trial of Peter's mother's (Tracey) boyfriend (Steven Barker) on a charge of raping a two-year-old girl.





In December, a doctor noticed bruising on Peter's chest and face, Because of this Tracey was arrested for child abuse and the young boy was placed in the care of a family friend, (I couldn't find out why he wasn't placed with his father). Peter was returned to his mother just a month later in January 2007,

Over the next few months, the little boy was further abused and was admitted to a hospital on two separate occasions suffering from injuries that consisted of bruising, scratches, and more seriously swelling to the side of his head. Due to this Tracey was again arrested, and just for clarification, the authorities did not know that Steven Barker was Tracey's live-in boyfriend.


In June 2007 a social worker saw further marks on the child and notified the police. After a medical examination, it was concluded that the bruising did in fact come from physical abuse and not just your average bruising that a toddler would sustain. On June 4th Peter was again placed with the family friend due to safeguarding issues.


Jason Owen
Jason Owen | Source: The Times



Between July and August, Peter would suffer extensive abuse by Steven Barker and his brother Jason Owen






On August 1st Peter was seen by a pediatric doctor, Dr. Sabah Al-Zayyat, at this time the boy was seriously injured and again he was failed as the injuries weren't noticed. At this point, baby Peter was only hours away from death.

The very next morning an ambulance was called, Peter was found in his crib blue and unresponsive, After failed attempts to resuscitate he was transported to the North Middlesex hospital where at 12.20 pm he was pronounced dead.


The police were notified and immediately began a murder investigation, Tracey Connelly and Steven Barker were arrested and charged with murder, Jason Owen would be arranged and charged at a later date.

Autopsy

In the autopsy, it was documented that Peters tiny body had over 50 injuries:

  • Injuries to the fingers of the right hand, including soft tissue loss to the middle finger, and a missing fingernail.

  • A broken tibia (leg bone that had been healing for months)

  • Old rib fractures that had been healing for two weeks, (The pathologist found 7 fractures of the 3rd to 9th ribbon on the left-hand side, noted that considerable force would have been needed to inflict these as a child of Peter's age have very pliable bones).

  • Around 3-4 days before death a broken spine. This was the most serious and significant injury suffered by Peter before his death, it was caused when his back was forcefully held over a knee, banister, or the side of his crib, it required a large amount of force, this injury was the equivalent seen in major car crashes.

  • 3 bruises to the left side of his face with an infected raw area in front of his left ear and around 10 bruises to his upper back area.

  • A missing tooth from the front of Peter's mouth was located in his stomach.

  • 4 injuries to legs and feet, including the removal of the nail on the right big toe.

  • Significant weight loss.


Injuries inflicted on Peter Connolly

Source: Action against abuse

Court case

convicted of Peter Connolly's murder, Tracey Connolly, Steven Baker, Jason Owen
Murderers | Source: Daily Mail

On November 11th, 2008, Jason Owen (36) and his brother Steven Barker (32), were found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child, and Tracey Connelly (27) had already entered a guilty plea. Jason Owen and Tracey Connelly were cleared of murder due to insufficient evidence, Steven Barker was found not guilty of murder by a jury.



Subsequently, there was a second trial that took place in April 2009, where Barker and Connelly faced charges relating to the rape of a 2-year-old girl. Both of them appeared under aliases. The victim of this crime was also under the same social service team.


Tracey Connolly received a sentence of "imprisonment for public protection", and was ordered to be indefinitely imprisoned until "deemed no longer to be a risk to the public and in particular to small children" with a minimum term of five years. She served four years after being detained indefinitely in May of 2009.

Steven Barker, was found guilty of causing the death of his then girlfriend's son, Peter Connelly, in north London in 2007, but cleared of murder at his trial in 2008 and was sentenced to 12 years in prison. He was later handed a life sentence with a minimum term of 10 years after he was convicted of raping a two-year-old girl at a subsequent trial in 2009, which he was ordered to serve concurrently. Jason Owen was sentenced to 6 years in prison for the murder of Peter Connolly.



Timeline


The following information is retrieved from Action Against Abuse


On March 1st, 2006, Peter Connolly is born

On March 22nd, 2006, health visitor Yvonne Douglas makes her first home visit. Records that Peter was developing well and breastfeeding but suffering oral thrush. Because of the family’s history, Peter’s case was placed in a blue folder, denoting cause for concern.

On March 24th, 2006, the family’s GP Jerome Ikwueke sees Peter for his oral thrush.

On April 7th, 2006, the health visitor weighs Peter at the baby clinic.

On April 13th, 2006, the GP carries out Peter’s 6-week check.

On May 2nd, 2006, Peter is taken to the GP suffering from diarrhea and vomiting.

On May 4th, 2006, Peter’s Mother [PM] takes Peter to the health clinic and is seen by the health visitor

On May 22nd, 2006, Peter has his first vaccinations for meningitis and diphtheria.

On May 28th, 2006, PM calls the out-of-hours emergency service because Peter is vomiting after feeding.

On June 4th, 2006, PM takes Peter to the GP for pain, diarrhea, and vomiting.

On June 9th, 2006, PM is seen for depression by a mental health worker (MHW) Karolina Jamry.

On June 19th, 2006, Peter receives his second vaccinations.

In Summer, 2006, Peter’s parents separate and his father leaves the family home on 17 July due to his wife’s infidelity. Peter’s relationship with Stephen Barker has begun. Within 3 months, he moves in with Peter’s mother and her children.

On August 11th, 2006, PM sees MHW again and discusses her marital problems.

On September 15th, 2006, the health visitor makes a home visit.

On September 18th, 2006, PM took Peter to the GP with a cough and nappy rash. During the consultation, PM complained that Peter was bruised easily and she might be accused of hurting him.

On October 13th, 2006, PM returned to the GP saying Peter had fallen down the stairs, and upon examination, the doctor found bruises on the left breast and left cranium and advised PM to install a stair gate. NOTE – Peter was only 7 and a half months old and NOT walking.

On November 17th, 2006, PM takes Peter to the GP again for an upper respiratory tract infection and thrush.

On December 11th, 2006, PM phoned the GP and said Peter had a swelling on his head and asked what she should do. The GP asked her to attend surgery for examination and consequently referred Peter to Whittington Hospital initially for a skeletal scan and blood clotting tests.

On December 12th, 2006, a strategy meeting was held attended by a social worker and DC Angela Slade (who also sees Peter) from the police. A decision was made that Peter could not return to the family home until the police investigation was completed.

On December 13th, 2006 the social worker and police officer interviewed two of Peter’s siblings at their school. No concerns were raised about their physical safety.

On December 15th, 2006, Peter was discharged from the hospital into the care of his mother’s friend, 25-year-old Angela Godfrey. On December 18th, 2006, a social worker, Agnes White, visited PM at the family home. Reports were that it was dirty, untidy, smelt of urine, and 3 dogs were living there.

On December 19th, 2006, PM and his maternal grandmother (MG) were arrested on suspicion of child cruelty.

On January 9th, 2007, Angela Godfrey takes Peter to the health clinic for thrush on his buttocks and is seen by the health visitor.

On January 10th, 2007 the first core group meeting was held and PM attended with Peter.

On January 12th, 2007, and again on 27 January Peter’s leg is x-rayed again at the hospital.

On January 19th, 2007, PM sees her MHW.

On January 27th, 2007, a review strategy meeting was held and it was agreed that if the injuries were non-accidental it was not clear who the perpetrator was. The police agreed Peter could return home once his mother had made alternative arrangements for the dogs.

On January 25th, 2007, Peter is taken to the GP with a nappy rash.

On January 26th, 2007, Peter returned home, despite the dogs still being there and despite no resolve of the protection issues.

On February 2nd, 2007, Peter has his third set of vaccinations. On the same date, Maria Ward is allocated as his social worker.

On February 8th, 2007, a ‘preliminary assessment’ of PM was carried out by Caroline Sussex (organization unknown).

On February 19th, 2007, the family moved to their new four-bedroom home.

On February 27th, 2007, social worker Maria Ward made her first home visit and observed a good relationship between Peter and his mother.

On March 2nd, 2007, the social worker and health visitor make a home visit and observe Peter head butting the floor.

On March 5th, 2007, a school nurse at the older children’s school phoned Maria Ward to report that she had observed PM shouting and slapping the face of one of Peter’s siblings outside the school.

On March 13th, 2007, the social worker spots a red mark on Peter’s face which his mother claims was caused by him falling on a table.

On April 7th, 2007, a family friend claims she saw Peter in the garden eating dirt with a large bruise on his forehead

On April 9th, 2007, the GP saw Peter with bruising on his face. At 16.40 Peter was admitted to the North Middlesex Hospital in Enfield

On April 10th, 2007, Peter is referred to the Child Development Center by a social worker who has observed him headbanging.

On April 11th, 2007, Peter was discharged back to the family home. A discharge report dated 17 April stated Peter had suffered, ‘a trivial head injury, caused by playing with siblings, a few days before admission.’

On April 12th, 2007, a child protection meeting was held at North Middlesex Hospital.

On April 24th, 2007, the social worker visited the home and saw all the children. She discussed with PM the fact that Peter appeared unsteady on his feet.

On May 2nd, 2007, a core group meeting was held.

On May 3rd, 2007, PM and Peter attended a parenting class.

On May 9th, 2007, the health visitor made a planned visit to the family home and noted that Peter was a lively and active toddler, clean and appropriately dressed.

On May 10th, 2007, PM missed a parenting class.

On May 18th, 2007, Peter was seen by the GP for an allergic reaction. He is prescribed antihistamines.

On May 21st, 2007, the social worker visited and saw all the children playing happily and observed they were well.

On May 24th, 2007, PM missed a parenting class.

On May 29th, 2007, PM fails to take Peter to an appointment with the Health Visitor at the Lordship Lane Clinic.

On May 31st, 2007, PM missed a parenting class.

On June 1st, 2007, the social worker made an unannounced visit to the family home and found Peter lying on the sofa under a blanket with a red face, bruising under the chin, and a red line under his eye.

On June 8th, 2007, the police took pictures of Peter and seized a toy from his home. A photo of Peter shows a bruise at the center of his spine.

Around June 29th, 2007, (though some accounts suggest it was some weeks earlier) Jason Owen, Barker’s brother, his 15-year-old girlfriend, and his three children move into Peter’s family home. Apparently concealing 6 extra people in a 4-bed house that already has 5 residents.

On August 3rd, 2007, the London Ambulance Service respond to a 999 call at 11.35. The caller was PM who reported a 17-month-old child, taking antibiotics was now not moving. She reported to the crew, who arrived at 11.43, that she had last seen him at approximately 01.00 and that he had been unwell recently with a fungal infection. PM traveled in the ambulance to North Middlesex Hospital with Peter, arriving at 11.49. He was pronounced dead at 12.19. The police were called and PM was arrested at 13.45.


Peter Connolly's grave
Peter Connolly's Resting Place |Source: Findagrave


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