Family call for inquiry into Ann Maguire murder

Murdered teacher Ann Maguire
Murdered teacher Ann Maguire

THE family of murdered Wigan schoolteacher Ann Maguire has launched a crowd funding campaign for an inquiry into her death.

Teenager Will Cornick, who fatally stabbed the 61-year-old, pleaded guilty to the crime meaning parts of the prosecution case were not heard in full detail.

Ann Maguire memorial plaque at Mesnes Park Pavilion in Wigan. 'Pictured are Ann'e sisters Sheila Connor and Denise Courtney

Ann Maguire memorial plaque at Mesnes Park Pavilion in Wigan. 'Pictured are Ann'e sisters Sheila Connor and Denise Courtney

And so the Maguire family has been left with unanswered questions regarding the circumstances surrounding the tragic incident.

Mrs Maguire’s widower, Don, said: “We know an independent inquiry won’t bring Ann back but it will give us peace to know whether anything could have been done to prevent her death, so that other families don’t have to suffer like us in the future.

“There has never been a full inquest and we asked the Leeds safeguarding children board to hold a serious case review to examine all the facts but they declined.

“At the court hearing last year there was a guilty plea and so there was never a full criminal trial which went through all the evidence.

“We believe that a comprehensive, open and independent statutory review examining all the information is crucial to learning lessons from this horrific incident which took place in front of many other pupils in school, traumatising pupils and staff and devastating our family.”

The Maguires are taking steps to get the inquiry under way but need to raise substantial funds to cover the costs needed to help professional legal experts seek an independent review. They have therefore set up a crowdfunding website.

Mrs Maguire, who was born in Scholes and grew up in Wigan, was killed at Corpus Christi Catholic College in Leeds in April 2014.

Cornick, who was 15 at the time of the murder, was jailed for a minimum of 20 years after he attacked her from behding, stabbing her seven times in the neck and back.

A statement from the Department for Education (DfE) said the Secretary of State would wait until the safeguarding board review was undertaken on “the tragic events”.

It read: “We understand that Leeds Safeguarding Children Board has already begun a two-stage learning lessons review which we trust will be open and full.”

Andrew Poole, Mrs Maguire’s nephew and adopted son, said the family had been left with feelings of “confusion and emptiness” because of not knowing the full background of Cornick’s actions.

Adding the aim was not to point “fingers to blame” but to “construct an accurate version of events and procedures that failed to protect her.”

The court trial, held last year, heard that Cornick had been planning the murder for a number of years but neither his parents, relatives or teachers saw it coming.