The inquest into the death of Ellie Butler concluded on Friday 23 March after hearing evidence in relation to Ellie’s death in October 2013.

The inquest was ordered to examine whether there were failures on the part of the authorities with regard to Ellie’s murder, including the sharing of information, co-operation and communication between organisations.

Ben Butler, Ellie’s father, is currently serving a life sentence after being convicted of her murder in June 2016 and her mother Jennie Gray is serving 42 months for child cruelty and attempting to pervert the course of justice. Ellie suffered a fatal head injury inflicted by her father who then attempted to cover up his crime with the help of Ms Gray.

Prior to her death Mr Butler had been convicted of causing Ellie grievous bodily harm in 2009 after she suffered a serious head injury as a small baby. This conviction was later overturned based on new medical evidence and Mr Butler and Ms Gray launched a campaign for Ellie and her younger sibling to be returned to them. Ellie was in the care of her grandparents until November 2012 when it was ruled by the Family Division of the High Court that she should be returned to her parents. She died 11 months later.

The coroner for the inquest Dame Linda Dobbs will announce her determination on 10 April. Samantha Jones represented CAFCASS at the inquest and was instructed by their in house legal team.


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