Chris Brown inquest: Durham Prison had no details on Roaul Moat's victim

Inquest hears evidence from deputy head of security at HMP Durham at the time of Roaul Moat's release

Chris Brown who was killed by Raoul Moat
Chris Brown who was killed by Raoul Moat

Prison staff had no intelligence on the man killed by Raoul Moat, an inquest heard.

On the third day of the inquiry into the death of Chris Brown at the hands of Moat in July 2010, evidence was heard from the prison’s then deputy head of security operations, Janet Bolton.

While being questioned by John Bedds, counsel representing the Chief Constable, she confirmed there was nothing in the prison database relating to threats against Mr Brown.

“There was no intelligence at all in relation to Mr Brown,” she said.

She agreed that Moat had not appeared to be anything other than a “model and respectful” prisoner.

He had even been given a special job during his short spell in HMP Durham, although what this was was not specified during the hearing at Newcastle Crown Court yesterday.

Mr Bedds said: “There was nothing to suggest he was anything other than a model and respectful prisoner.” To which Ms Bolton agreed.

Speaking about the events which unfolded after Moat’s release, Mr Bedds added: “There is nothing in any of the prison databases to give you the slightest hint that is going to happen.” Ms Bolton again agreed.

Moat was released from HMP Durham on July 1, 2010, and two days later shot dead 29-year-old Mr Brown and wounded Samantha Stobbart, Mr Brown’s partner and Moat’s former girlfriend, in Birtley, Gateshead.

The inquest at Newcastle Crown Court has heard prison officers were warned on the day of Moat’s release that he had made threats of assault on his former partner Ms Stobbart. But there were mistakes in how the Serious Information Report (SIR) with this information was lodged and a failure in it being classed as “action immediately”.

Questioning Ms Bolton, Coroner Terence Carney said: “This form really should have had much more urgent attention to it from the outset, would you agree?” Ms Bolton agreed.

Ms Bolton told how she first came across the SIR in relation to reports on Moat’s threats the day after his release. When she received it on the morning of July 2 her colleague had left it marked as take action with 72 hours. However Ms Bolton said she had disagreed with this and had changed it to take action immediately.

“My thought processes were, I have a prisoner who at that point had been released the previous day who had made a serious threat against his partner,” said Ms Bolton. She said action she wanted to be taken would be passing the information on to the police liaison officer and the offender manager.

The inquest heard there was a delay in the SIR regarding Moat’s threats reaching the next stage. It was possible it had been placed in a tray for non-urgent reports instead of being handed on to another member of staff, but Ms Bolton had “no recollection”.

Ms Bolton also said that the SIR was nothing out of the ordinary and something she encountered on an almost daily basis in prison. But she told the inquest she was “genuinely sorry” if she was responsible for the report delay.


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