Tuesday, 17 March 2009

We did help Carlisle toddler found living in drugs den, say Social Services

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Social Services chiefs today insisted that they did act on a tip-off about a Carlisle toddler who was found by police living in a squalid drugs den.

The father of the child was yesterday given a suspended three-month jail sentence.

Allan O’Shea was sentenced by a judge at Carlisle Crown Court after spending the weekend in Durham Prison.

The court had earlier been told how police who visited the home where he lived with the girl’s mother and the child had found it was stinking of stale urine and littered with used hypodermic needles.

Police took the girl into protective custody on April 6, 2008 and it emerged in court last week that Social Services had been given an anonymous tip-off about the child’s plight in January of that year.

It was initially suggested that Social Services had not intervened quickly enough.

Judge Paul Batty QC had adjourned the case last week saying he wanted to know what involvement Social Services had with the family.

Yesterday, the judge said he had received a letter from Cumbria County Council’s head of service at Social Services, Helen Smith.

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