Thursday, 8 December 2016
Families of Stephen Port's victims to launch legal action against Met Police
Port, was sentenced to life in prison last month after being found guilty of murdering Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor, who he had met on the gay dating app Grindr.
The 41 year-old lured the men to his house, before drugging them with GHB (also known as liquid ecstasy) and sexually assaulting them, between June 2014 and September 2015.
Timeline of events...
Port was charged with perverting the course of justice for filing a false report after the first death in June 2014, when he told police he found Anthony Walgate's body lying unconscious in the street, when in fact it was uncovered he had hired him via a gay escort service.
But despite Port being known to police, officers did not make any connection to the deaths of Gabriel Kovari and Daniel Whitworth, who were killed within DAYS of each other in August 2014.
No murder investigation took place, with police treating the two deaths as "unexplained" but no suspicious.
Over the course of months, Mr Kovari's former roommate John Pape, raised concerns over a possible link between the deaths, but the Met said they were not treating the deaths as suspicious, dismissing Pape's concerns.
In March 2015 Port was jailed on the perverting the course of justice charge associated with the first murder, but after being released killed his fourth victim, Jack Taylor in September 2015.
The Met Police finally took action and launched a murder investigation, arresting Port on suspicion of murder in October 2015, the Met then referred itself to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
Families level criticism at police failures...
Speaking to Victoria Derbyshire on the BBC Jack Taylor's sisters Donna and Jenny felt it was obvious that Stephen Port had taken Jack's life, but felt "the police didn't do their jobs, with any of the families", adding "As far as we're concerned, they have played a massive part in Jack's death because if they had done their jobs properly, Jack would still be here".
Anthony Walgate's Mum Sarah Sak said she couldn't help but think that the case would have been treated differently if the victims had been female.
You can hear what the families had to say on Victoria Live - Here
To me the families deserve nothing more than an inquiry and detailed answers, as to why the Met Police failed in such a profound way, despite the glaring connections staring them in the face and constant calls of family and friends to look deeper into the case, rather than boxing it off as not being suspicious in the first instance.
I think it also has to be looked at, as to if the sexuality of these men had anything to do with the shambles of an "investigation", lets hope that answers are uncovered, for the sake of the grieving friends and family of these young men, whose lives were cut tragically, and needlessly short.
The IPCC investigation is ongoing.