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Last Updated: Monday, 19 March 2007, 15:58 GMT
Mother loses public inquiry bid
Joseph Scholes
Joseph Scholes died days into a two-year sentence in March 2002
The House of Lords has ruled against a public inquiry into the death of a 16-year old who died in a young offenders' institution in 2002.

Joseph Scholes, from Sale, Greater Manchester, committed suicide nine days into a two-year sentence at Stoke Heath YOI, Market Drayton, Shropshire.

His mother, Yvonne, wanted the inquiry to look at whether the sentence violated human rights laws.

Joseph had made a previous attempt on his life and had harmed himself.

Yvonne, from of Meliden, near Prestatyn, north Wales, contacted officials about her concerns when he was sentenced.

Yvonne Scholes
Yvonne Scholes said she is disappointed

She told an inquest hearing in 2004 that Joseph had talked to her about taking his own life in a telephone conversation a day before he was found hanged.

Speaking to the BBC on Monday she said she had always expected to fight a lengthy campaign to get a public inquiry.

"Of course we are very dismayed by the Lords' decision," she said.

"But having said that from the outset we were advised that we would have a campaign - a call for a public inquiry - that would take the best part of a decade and that ultimately we would probably end up in the European courts.

"So, whereas it is of course disappointing we do view it as a family as somewhat more of a step along the way."

Monitor phone calls

An inquest jury returned a verdict of accidental death and the coroner called for a public inquiry, which was rejected by the home secretary in September 2005.

A judicial review at the High Court in November failed to overturn the government's decision.

Judges concluded that the inquest in 2004 discharged the home secretary's obligation to investigate.

Last September the Home Office also rejected a key recommendation of a report into Joseph's suicide which called for inmates' phone calls to be monitored.

Joseph was sentenced to a two-year detention and training order imposed at Manchester Crown Court in March 2002 after he admitted a number of street robberies.




SEE ALSO
Suicide appeal hearing rejected
17 Oct 06 |  Shropshire
Suicide report call is rejected
18 Sep 06 |  Shropshire
Inquiry call over youth's suicide
21 Jun 06 |  Shropshire
Court blocks inmate death inquiry
16 Jan 06 |  Shropshire
Hanged cell boy's case to begin
29 Nov 05 |  Shropshire
Hanged boy's mother wins hearing
13 Jun 05 |  Shropshire
Inquest verdict over teen's death
30 Apr 04 |  Shropshire
Unit criticised over boy's death
19 Apr 04 |  Shropshire

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