Good Morning Britain host Susanna Reid had to wipe away tears while speaking to the grandmother of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes.
Madeleine Halcrow appeared on the talk show this morning, December 7, to talk about her six-year-old grandson, who was tortured and killed by his stepmother and father in June 2020.
Halcrow recalled seeing the warning signs that Arthur was being harmed, and claimed opportunities to save the young boy were missed.
The grandmother, who works as a nurse, recalled seeing Arthur’s paternal grandmother two months prior to his death in 2020, at which time his other grandmother showed her pictures of bruises on the six-year-old’s shoulders.
Upon seeing the images, she said, ‘Those are non-accidental injuries… They’re caused by an adult hand.’
She recalled being able to see ‘three fingers’ marked on Arthur’s right shoulder, while his left was covered with a bruise caused by ‘hitting with something or being pushed against something’.
Halcrow became emotional as she explained that the bruises showed signs of ongoing abuse, prompting Reid to wipe away tears as she spoke.
Warning: Distressing Content:
She said, ‘There’s new bruises on top of old, which tells me this has been going on… There’s yellow bruises, there was purple bruises, all over the kid’s back.’
The grandmother called social services to express her concern over the bruises, however she was told that authorities had visited Arthur only one day earlier and that they ‘didn’t find anything untoward’.
Reid could also be heard crying off camera during the interview, with tears visible on her face as she passed a box of tissues to Halcrow while she spoke.
Halcrow expressed her belief that there are big issues in the system responsible for ensuring Arthur’s safety, telling the Good Morning Britain hosts that she wants ‘the whole inter-agency review’ to change.
I appreciate everyone’s workload is higher, but it’s like the ‘somebody, nobody, anybody could have done it’, but nobody ended up doing it anyway, and this is a classic case of that.
Emma Tustin was sentenced to 29 years in prison for murder and child cruelty after Arthur died of a fatal head injury, while his father, Thomas Hughes, was given 21 years for manslaughter.
Halcrow said the sentences were not enough for the crimes, arguing that ‘life should mean life’ in prison.
She continued, ‘They took Arthur’s life, and he’s not gonna get his life back. He’s not gonna have children of his own; they’ve took him from my daughter. Life should mean life, there was no remorse, no sympathy shown.’
Arthur was found with more than 130 bruises when he died.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues and want to speak to someone in confidence regarding the welfare of a child, contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000, 8am–10pm Monday to Friday, 9am–6pm weekends. If you are a child seeking advice and support, call Childline for free on 0800 1111.
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