Children’s services boss who quit weeks after Arthur was murdered WON’T say sorry

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2019

February: Arthur’s biological mother, Olivia Labinjo-Halcrow, 29, kills her partner Gary Cunningham by  stabbing him 12 times with a kitchen knife. 

Arthur is moved into the care of his father, Thomas Hughes, 29. Later he meets Emma Tustin, 32, online. 

Hughes and Arthur moved into an annexe at the back of his parent’s garden. 

His grandmother said Arthur was ‘nervous’ at first but became a ‘happy, well-rounded child’. 

August: Hughes met Tustin on dating website Plenty of Fish. They went on their first date in a pub.   

Tustin failed to reveal that in 2013 she had tried to commit suicide. 

She also failed to reveal how her first two children went to live with their fathers. 

After three dates Hughes introduced Tustin to Arthur.

September: Hughes’ brother Blake said his nephew’s behaviour ‘change quite a lot’. 

He said his brother became more anxious at being told off while his brother ‘became a lot stricter.’

Hughes also recalled an incident where he argued with Tustin because he bought Arthur a Subway sandwich, which she said was ‘an unnecessary treat.’

October: Aileen Carabine, a special educational coordinator at Arthur’s school, said Arthur ‘deteriorated’ that month. 

She said he became more reserved, anxious and ‘not quite as smiley’. 

November: Thomas and his mother Joanne met with Arthur’s school to discuss their growing concerns about his behaviour. 

Teachers said Arthur was having nightmares and spoke of his father ‘killing him.’

Tustin became pregnant with Hughes, but had a miscarriage.

December: Arthur became upset during a Christmas nativity when the baby was taken out of its crib. 

Hughes proposed to Tustin in the annexe. 

2020 

January: Arthur’s school begin to raise concerns about him, including his ‘clinginess’ and ‘obsession’ with soft toys’. 

February: Tustin took Arthur with her to have her hair done. Arthur was made to sit at a table with his hands on his knees and not move. 

March: Hughes and Arthur move into Tustin’s home in Solihull. 

April 16:  Arthur’s paternal grandmother, Joanne Hughes, made a call to Solihull council’s emergency team to report bruises on his shoulders.

April 17: Social worker Jayne Kavanagh and support worker Angela Scarlett-Coppage visit Tustin’s home but report ‘no concerns’. 

April 20: A desperate Joanne Hughes tells Arthur’s school about the referral to social services she had made four days earlier. Michelle Hull, safeguarding lead at Dickens Heath Community Primary School, contacts social services but is told they have ‘no concerns’. 

April (specific date unclear): Thomas Hughes fobs off Arthur’s school in online messages, insisting he is ‘doing grand’. 

April (specific date unclear): Arthur’s uncle, Daniel Hughes, tries to alert police to Arthur’s bruises. 

May/June (specific date unclear): When John Dutton, Tustin’s stepfather, says he made an anonymous call to social services.

June 8: Arthur’s school re-opened but Hughes did not send him back. He claimed his son had a bad night’s sleep and would send him back the next day. 

Arthur would never return to school.  

June 12-15: Arthur spent more than 35 hours in isolation in the hallway.

On Friday Arthur was made to stand in hall for 14 hours, 19 minutes, as Tustin ate McDonald’s with her son in the living room.

On Saturday Arthur was made to stand in the hall for 11 hours and 49 minutes. 

In the video, Hughes can be seen slapping him around the head while Tustin grabbed him by the scruff of the neck as she marches him from the kitchen to the hallway.

The couple spent time in their garden hot tub and eating ice creams.

On Sunday Arthur was in the hallway for 10 hours and 54 minutes and made to wear a fleece onesie.

June 15: Tustin is seen waking Arthur up at 7.06am by ripping his bedding from underneath him.  

Horrific final video shows an emaciated Arthur struggling to pick up a duvet from the living room floor where he had been forced to sleep.  

June 16: Arthur suffered an ‘unsurvivable injury’ caused by Tustin repeatedly banging his head on a hard surface. 

June 17: Arthur’s life support was switched off and he died in hospital.  

July 2, 2021:  Labinjo-Halcrow is jailed for 11 years for killing Mr Cunningham. 



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