Sequeli Consortium's Home Office Guide to Overview Report Writing

Sequeli, as a member of Sequeli Consortium, was awarded a contract in 2012 to develop Home Office training materials, including a series of Information Sheets and a Guide to Overview Report Writing (see right of this page) for Home Office training of chairs and report writers of domestic homicide reviews in England and Wales. The Guide was placed on the Home Office website in March 2031 and remains current.

Sequeli Consortium comprised Sequeli, the Health and Social Care Advisory Service (HASCAS) and Laura Richards Consultancy, with Associates Amerdeep Somal, Independent Complaints Commissioner; Professor Jill Manthorpe, King's College London; James Blewett, King's College London and David Mason, Solicitor, Capsticks. The Consortium was fortunate that other experts also contributed to the training materials, including Frank Mullane, Director of Advocacy after Fatal Domestic Abuse and Aisha Gill, Reader in Criminology at the University of Roehampton.

Many of the materials are based on Sequeli's training materials. They use as a framework a domestic homicide review training curriculum created for the Home Office and are modelled on Sequeli's Core Competencies. Some of the materials are now available on the Home Office website where details of the Home Office training can also be found.

Since the Department for Education has also developed training materials based on Sequeli training materials, this is helping to standardise the approach towards reviews. Go to Sequeli's children's serious case review page for information about the Department for Education training and training materials.

Domestic homicide review archive

The IPCC Pilkington Report

On 24 May 2011
the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) published its IPCC report into the contact between Fiona Pilkington and Leicestershire Constabulary 2004-2007: Independent Investigation Final Report. Fiona Pilkington had killed herself and her severely disabled daughter in 2007 following years of harrassment and antisocial behaviour by local youths.

The IPCC concluded there was a failure by police officers to identify the family as 'a collective vulnerable family unit' and that the 'level of service given to Fiona Pilkington and her family by Leicestershire Constabulary fell far below the level expected'. Many lessons were said to have been learnt from the tragic deaths.

The artificiality of categorising responses to such incidents is revealed here. Mrs Pilkington's daughter attended a special school, received support from children's services and was in transition to adult services. The family was vulnerable, needed protection from harassment and the homicide would now come within the category of domestic homicide, necessitating a stautory domestic homicide review (see below).

Statutory domestic homicide reviews

On 13 April 2011
Section 9 of the Domestic Violence and Victims of Crime Act 2004 came into force, creating new statutory domestic homicide reviews.

The legislation is supported by a new Multi-agency Statutory Guidance for the Conduct of Domestic Homicide Reviews published by the Home Office on 31 March 2011.

Key features are:

  • The domestic homicide review Statutory Guidance is modelled on existing serious case reviews.
  • There is no reference to the use of systems analysis or root cause analysis, distinguishing it from mental health investigations and the new systems methodology recommended for children's serious case reviews in the Munro Review Report (see under children's serious case reviews on this news page for further details).
  • There are positive references to the importance of including families, friends and informal networks in domestic homicide reviews.
  • There is a useful online training package covering procedure for those involved with domestic homicide reviews, though this does not alter the need for skills and knowledge of techniques for obtaining and analysing information and writing reports.

The Pemberton Review

On 18 November 2003
, Alan Pemberton shot his son William, his wife Julia, from whom he was separated and then himself. The ensuing domestic homicide review report made many recommendations, not least of which was that s9 of the Domestic Violence and Victims of Crime Act 2004 be enacted (paragraph 3.139). Over two years later that day has come. In the meantime, Julia Pemberton's brother Frank Mullane, has campaigned for guidance which will ensure that domestic homcide reviews receive comment, where possibe, from family and friends of the victim and perpetrator.

On 12 April 2011, Frank Mullane, interviewed on Woman's Hour, described how important it was "to shine the greatest possible light" on events which had taken place and "bring the victim's voice into these reviews".

The Home Office agreed with him and his contribution stands as a key feature of the new domestic homicide reviews.


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Laura Richards of Laura Richards Consultancy, is a nationally important figure in the field of domestic violence and is founder and Director of PALADIN, A National Stalking Advocacy Service.

Frank Mullane, Director of Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse (AAFDA) has been a key contributor to Sequeli, advising us and the Home Office on the involvement of families and friends in domestic homicide reviews. He also has links with Dr Neil Websdale and the National Domestic Violence Fatality Review Initiative in Arizona.

READ Sequeli's Summary of its seminar Domestic Homicide Reviews for chairs, report writers, review panel and CSP members held on 4 July 2012 at Middle Temple, London

READ 'Reasons to be cheerful about domestic homicide reviews' by Sequeli in Police Professional magazine

READ Sequeli's commentary Serious case reviews are the model for domestic homicide reviews

READ Community Care article
SCR-style reviews to probe domestic violence deaths with Sequeli comments

READ Police Professional magazine Executive feature article
Reviewing domestic homicide, 14 April 2011, based on Sequeli commentary









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