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High Court asked to look again at second Jodey Whiting inquest decision

An application for permission to appeal the High Court’s judgment not to grant a second inquest into the death of Jodey Whiting has been lodged with the court.

Posted on 01 October 2021

Jodey’s mother, Joy Dove, has made the application for permission to appeal on several grounds including that, in light of new evidence, the court was wrong reaching its conclusion that the first inquest was sufficient to fulfil its common law duties and that the court was wrong in deciding a fresh inquest was not necessary on the basis that the public interest does not require a broader inquiry because other forms of scrutiny exist.

Ms Dove also argues in her case that the duties under Article 2 of the Human Rights Act (the right to life) should be engaged due to the multiple serious and systematic failings of the DWP. She argues that the court was mistaken in concluding that to grant a fresh inquest it had to deem the first one insufficient – this is not the position in law, the appeal application argues.

The High Court handed down its judgment on 17 September 2021 dismissing Ms Dove’s case, ruling that the first inquest was sufficient and that the new evidence that had come to light since did not require a fresh inquest in the interests of justice.

Joy Dove said:

“I can’t accept that the first inquest into Jodey’s death was a thorough investigation into the reasons for her death. I believe that there should be a proper and full look at the way that she was let down by the DWP and that the public need to know what went wrong there. For Jodey’s sake, I have to appeal the refusal to grant us a second inquest.”

Merry Varney, partner from law firm Leigh Day, added:

“Our client is arguing that the Divisional Court was wrong not to find it necessary and desirable in the public interest for a second inquest to take place to investigate the possibility that DWP failings, described by the Court as “shocking”, caused or contributed to Jodey’s death.”

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