Exclusive:Inquest into death of 13 month old Preston Davey opened by Blackpool Coroner Alan Wilson

An inquest into the death of a 13 month old boy at the centre of a murder probe has been opened and adjourned at Blackpool.
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An inquest into the death of a 13 month old boy at the centre of a murder probe has been opened and adjourned at Blackpool Coroner’s Court, on Tuesday October 10.

The toddler, who lived on Staining Road arrived at Blackpool Victoria Hospital in an unresponsive state shortly after 6.30pm on July 27, but died just after 7.15pm, despite the efforts of medical staff.

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Blackpool coroner Alan Wilson told the hearing, which was not attended by any relatives, that he was formally opening the inquest which would examine how the boy had met his death.

Mr Wilson said that concerns had been raised by clinicians at the hospital in relation to the youngster’s condition.

A post mortem had been carried out by pathologist Dr Alison Armour but she had withheld her medical opinion upon the outcome of further investigations, the court heard.

Mr Wilson said: “Lancashire Police say ongoing criminal investigations are likely to take some time, pending the medical cause of death.

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"Is there reasonable suspicion that the death was not due to natural causes?

"We are waiting for the police to complete their investigation, therefore I think I will formally open the inquest now.”

Explaining what would happen next, he said proceedings would await Dr Armour’s post mortem report being available to the police, and the Crown Prosecution Service would in turn wait to see if criminal proceedings would be undertaken.

On the conclusion of those matters, he would then decide if there was to be an inquest.

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Accordingly, Mr Wilson said he would not formally list a date for an inquest hearing, but would instead set a date for a review for Friday March 8 2024, by which time he would be in a better position to gauge how the investigations were going.

Mr Wilson added that prior to the toddler being taken to hospital, he wanted to discover if there had been any previous hospital attendances.

He asked the senior coroner’s officer, Rachel Frudd, to approach clinicians from the Blackpool hospital trust to find out if this had been the case and report back to him “42 days from now” to see if this would have any impact on the investigations.

Mr Wilson made a request that the boy’s mother, who was in attendance, be informed of the day’s proceedings.

The inquest was adjourned until March 8.

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