Monday, October 24, 2005

Young boy trapped in flat with dead mum for up to 6 weeks; how uncaring are the people of Edinburgh?


What is the state of family life in Edinburgh, capital of Scotland?

How neighbourly are the people of Edinburgh?

How efficient are the police, teachers and social workers?


Three-year-old Michael McGarrity was trapped in an Edinburgh council flat for about six weeks.

His mother, Anne-Marie, lay dead on the living room floor.

Michael was too small to unlock the flat's door.

The staff at the nursery that Michael attended waited about six weeks before contacting Michel's grandmother.

Grandmother contacted the police.

The police came to the block of flats but got no reply. They went away.

It was only on their second visit to the block of flats that they entered Michael's flat and discovered Michael.

When police broke into the flat, Michael was beside the body of his mother.

He was like a skeleton and barely able to stand.

1. While alone in the flat, 'Michael pushed letters back through on to the concrete landing'.

2. Neighbours reportedly complained to the building's concierge several times of a strong smell coming from the flat and the presence of flies.

3. Michael had been a regular attender at a local nursery. Michael's absence from the nursery school was not reported for 6 weeks.

4. Michael and his mother had apparently not been visited by members of the extended family for some time. Sources say several family members are now contesting the right to raise Michael.

5. Next-door neighbour Moira Chisholm said she often enjoyed a chat and a coffee with Michael's mother Anne Marie on the balcony in the summer. She added:"She was an active women, always out and about. She used to take Michael to nursery every day and a lot of people round here can't be bothered to take their kids to nursery. She was a good mum."

Mrs Chisholm said that in the days leading up to the discovery of Anne-Marie's body, she noticed dozens of bluebottles gathering on her living room wall, which connected to Anne-Marie's flat, and in the hallway outside.

"I knocked on her door a couple of times after I noticed mail popping back out on to the landing. I started to think to myself that something wasn't right. I went down to the concierge's office a couple of times saying I hadn't seen Anne-Marie for a while and maybe they should investigate. I also noticed that her fob on the security door hadn't been used for a couple of weeks."

6. When the police came round to the flat the first time, they did not enter the flat.

Will anything change? The Scots seem like the people of some enslaved Soviet republic.



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