Yesterday was a shocking revelation about the failures of both doctors and social workers in detecting two horrific acts of abuse against toddlers.

Friends and relatives were concerned five times and alerted authorities before Star Hobson, 16 months old, was murdered in her care by her mother and violent boyfriend.

In another appalling case, Ella-Rose Clover was murdered aged 22 months after doctors failed to raise the alarm about abuse she had suffered.

Nine times she was taken to the hospital in the time before her death. She had internal injuries and bruises. In one instance, she needed emergency surgery. Six surgeons and doctors apologised for their mistakes or acknowledged that they could have done something differently.

Star’s case was handled by social workers who believed Star’s complaints were malicious due to her disapproval regarding her mother and same-sex relationship.

Even her great-grandparents warned the social services that they didn’t want another Baby P.

In another appalling case, Ella-Rose Clover (pictured) was murdered aged 22 months after doctors failed to raise the alarm about abuse she had suffered

Ella Rose Clover, pictured (above), was killed at the age of 22 months. She had been abused and doctors didn’t raise alarm.

After the death of Arthur Labinjo Hughes, 6, earlier in the month, the authorities failed to bring the cases. Star’s family and friends convinced the authorities that there wasn’t any substance to their concerns. This is a chilling echo from Arthur’s murder.

The Covid lockdown was in effect at the time of both murders. Experts warn that children who were not in touch with authorities at the time of their murders could be vulnerable.

Savannah Brockhill (28), was found guilty yesterday by the Bradford Crown Court jury of Star’s Murder.

Frankie Smith (the child’s mother and partner), was cleared for murder and manslaughter. However, she was found guilty of either causing or allowing death to a child. The sentence will take effect today.

Ella-Rose Clover was subjected to a fatal attack by Michael Wild (pictured) who is serving a life sentence for her murder

Michael Wild, who was serving a life sentence in connection to Ella Rose Clover’s murder, attacked Ella Rose Clover and killed her. 

Little Star Hobson (pictured)

Star Hobson (pictured) who was killed in the care of her mother and violent girlfriend

Five times, friends and family raised concerns before Star Hobson (16 months) was shot to death in the custody of her mother.

Savannah Brockhill, 28, (right) was found guilty of Star's murder by a jury at Bradford Crown Court yesterday. Pictured: Brockhill and Star's mother Frankie Smith (left)

Savannah Brockhill (right), was yesterday found guilty by Bradford Crown Court of Star’s Murder. Pictured (left to right): Star’s mother Frankie Smith (left), Brockhill.

The cases came after failings by the authorities in the murder of six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes (pictured) caused outrage earlier this month

After the failures of authorities to solve the case surrounding the death of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, six years old (pictured), the cases have been brought forward.

Five spurned warnings  

Star Hobson was born May 2019.

November: Star Hobson’s father, Jordan Hobson is killed by Star Smith. Star then begins to fall in love with Savannah Brockhill.

January 2020: Hollie Jones, babysitter, refers Hollie to social services for the first time. The family is visited by police and social services. The case is closed one month later.

February: Star spends ten weeks with Anita Smith her great-grandmother. Star’s health then improves.

April: Smith brings Star along and moves into Keighley Housing Association Flat in West Yorkshire.

May: Anita Smith is referred to social services by Anita Smith two days after Star’s departure. Brockhill and Smith are seen by social workers who claim that their report is’malicious.’ This was due to Brockhill’s dislike for their relationship.

June Smith’s sister is the one who sends images of her infant to police. Star’s father also refers Star to the social services after he sees bruising in a photograph. The child is taken to the hospital by police and social services. They accept her injuries as accidental. Rachel Whiteley, a friend from Star’s family, refers her to the fourth Social Services referral at the end of the month.

September: Frank Smith is Star’s great grandfather and makes her fifth referral for social services. He sent Star a video of bruising. With the child, social workers visit Smith and Brockhill. They accepted their accidental explanations for the child’s bruising, and closed the file in September 2015. Brockhill can be seen repeatedly striking Star inside her car while she was working at a recycling center. Star was beaten to death by Brockhill on September 22nd, the day that a social worker had to meet Smith. Smith delayed the meeting.


Star sustained ‘utterly devastating’ injuries after Brockhill punched, kicked, or stamped her stomach at her Keighley home, West Yorkshire in September 2013.

By the time Star reached the hospital, she had already suffered weeks of brutal physical abuses from the women. Star was left with bruises from injuries when Smith and Brockhill visited her body, according to police and social workers. The family members who referred them were accused of prejudice towards their relationship and Brockhill’s gipsy heritage.

These are the verdicts

  • Boris Johnson claimed Star’s assassination was heartbreaking, and promised to “protect children against these barbaric crimes.”
  • The children’s commissioner in England for Dame Rachel de Souza said that the authorities should learn from the Star and Arthur disasters.
  •  Tory MP Robbie Moore said Bradford council bosses should ‘hang their heads in shame’ and resign;
  • Protection agencies expressed their deep regret and promised an immediate review.
  • One family member called Bradford’s social services’shambolic.

Star was already sealed by her mother’s divorce from her father, a student. She began an affair with Brockhill. According to the court, Smith suffered from physical abuse by Brockhill throughout their relationship, which resulted in a series of fractures.

Star often saw bruising on her face, body and arms. Friends and family tried to help and circulated photos.

Although Star was not attacked by either of the women, the jury learned that Star and Star colluded to conceal the truth.

David Fawcett (61), the ex-partner of Star’s great grandmother Anita Smith (77) said about Brockhill, “To me, she was pure evil.” She came from hell to destroy and ruin our family.

They contacted social services because Brockhill was ‘slam-choking’ the toddler – lifting her by the throat and throwing her on the bed. Yesterday, Mr Fawcett stated that Bradford council had failed five attempts to aid Star. It was chaotic. Star might be here today if social services took more notice.

David Fawcett, 61, (pictured) the former partner of Star's great-grandmother Anita Smith, 70, said of Brockhill: 'To me she was just pure evil. She ascended from the bowels of hell and just completely devastated and wrecked our family'

David Fawcett is 61. He was the ex-partner of Star’s great grandmother Anita Smith (pictured). Brockhill’s 70-year old grandmother said about her: “She was just pure evil to me. She came from hell to destroy and ruin our family.

Star was assassinated on September 7, 2005, and the file containing the last of five complaints had been closed one week prior.

“Dame Rachel” said that we must ask hard questions about the circumstances of the incident, as well as the harder questions regarding the reasons for the second instance in the last week.

The local police, social service and health chiefs of Bradford issued a joint statement saying: “We are deeply sorry that we did not see all warning signs that would have allowed us to take a stronger statutory enforcement action.”

Mark Douglas, who was Bradford council’s £121,000-a-year children’s services director during Star’s short life, resigned days before the trial. 

The file on the final of the five complaints was closed a week before Star (pictured) was murdered

Star was assassinated a week after the file regarding the last of five complaints had been closed.