Assignment 204 - Task B

457 Words2 Pages
Soham Murders A crime shook Britain and put the name of Soham, the quiet, market village in Cambridgeshire, in history. Schoolgirls Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman left a family barbecue to go and buy sweets and were never seen again. The hunt for the missing 10-year-olds, left the nation gripped for nearly two weeks, ended in tragedy when their bodies were found in shallow graves near an RAF base in Suffolk. Local school caretaker Ian Huntley was arrested and charged with their abduction and murder. The then-28-year-old claimed Holly had accidentally drowned after falling into the bath at his rented cottage as he tried to treat her nosebleed. He also claimed to have accidentally suffocated Jessica while trying to stop her screaming after she witnessed the incident. However a jury failed to believe his lies and following a six-week trial at the Old Bailey, Huntley was found guilty on both counts of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. Maxine Carr, his girlfriend was also found guilty of perverting the course of justice, and then she was charged and served a 21-month prison term. Ten years on from the tragedy, Holly’s family have spoken out vowing to “make it out the other side”. Inadequate arrangements Insufficient attention was given to how residents would escape from the home in the event of a fire. The sheriff said an adequate fire plan would have revealed the problems which eventually led to the deaths, such as the staffs was not properly trained in fire safety and the presence of an electrical distribution board in a cupboard which opened to a "critical escape route" alongside flammable materials. He also highlighted "inadequate arrangements" for calling the fire brigade, a lack of fire dampeners and too many people being housed in one corridor in order to evacuate more effectively. The inquiry also concluded that the lives of four of
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