Social Services In Firing Line As Three-Year-Old Dies
She was left to die on a flea-ridden mattress above a pub after her cruel mother neglected her for months. But despite being alerted to toddler Tiffany Wright’s torment almost a year earlier, social services did not even bother to visit the tot and try to rescue her.
The only action bungling officials took was to send one letter to the three-year-old’s parents.
And after 11 months of neglect, the tragic child died of starvation, alone and unloved as her wicked mum Sabrina Hirst, 22, and 44-year-old stepdad Robert Hirst boozed it up in the bar downstairs.
A report has blasted social services and even the public for ignoring Tiffany’s plight.
Independent consultant Peter Ward, who carried out the investigation, said: “This is one of the saddest and most distressing cases of child cruelty I’ve ever come across.”
Social services had been told of fears for Tiffany by a worried midwife.
But they never went to see her at the Scarborough Arms where she lived. They sent the letter then dropped the case after just three days.
The damning report, which found 33 blunders by the authorities, said the midwife’s concerns were “never adequately addressed”. Paramedics found Tiffany’s decomposing body two days after she died.
She was surrounded by dog dirt and putrid water. She had not been fed or given water for at least 20 hours and left alone most of the time.
Her mum had even been heard discussing the health of their dog as her daughter starved to death upstairs.
Mr Ward’s Serious Case Review also singled out pub regulars and relatives who feared for the child’s welfare but never told social services.
He said: “The public, if they have concerns, should never assume the authorities will know about children’s circumstances.”
Health staff were denied access to the filthy living quarters at the Sheffield pub.
Mr Ward added: “This mother and stepfather were persistently untruthful, evasive and manipulative of visiting professionals.
“It is also clear family, friends and members of the community were deceived.”
Tiffany’s mum was jailed for 12 years after admitting manslaughter and child cruelty when she appeared at Sheffield crown court earlier this year.
Her stepdad pleaded guilty to cruelty and got five years.