WORCESTERSHIRE Safeguarding Children Partnership said an independent review would now continue following the verdict in the Alfie Steele murder trial. 

Carla Scott and her fiancee Dirk Howell have been convicted of killing the nine-year-old - Howell found guilty for murder and Alfie's mum Scott for manslaughter - following a trial at Coventry Crown Court. 

The court heard during the six-week trial that Social Services missed an opportunity to prevent the death 11 months before. 

In March 2020 legal discussions took place on whether to remove Alfie from Scott's care after concerns. 

However, because Scott was seen to be working with social workers at that stage, it was deemed the situation did not cross the threshold for him to be removed. 

Worcester News: REMEMBERED: Alfie SteeleREMEMBERED: Alfie Steele (Image: West Mercia Police)

After Worcestershire County Council was approached for comment they sent us this statement from Stephen Eccleston, Independent Chair of Worcestershire Safeguarding Children Partnership. 

“Members of the Worcestershire Safeguarding Children Partnership are shocked and saddened by the death of Alfie," Mr Eccelston said.

"On behalf of the Partnership I would like to take this opportunity to pass on our condolences to Alfie’s family.

READ MORE: Mum and partner found guilty of killing nine-year-old Alfie Steele

READ MORE: Remembering Alfie: "Courageous" smiling nine-year-old who lived at house of horrors

READ MORE: 'Scott and Howell have shown no remorse for Alfie's death'

“Following his death, we began a process of conducting a local Child Safeguarding Practice Review.

"With the completion of the trial, we will now be asking the independent reviewer to complete the review.

"The report is due to be published later this year and we will consider further comment at that time.”

Worcester News: VERDICTS: Dirk Howell and Carla ScottVERDICTS: Dirk Howell and Carla Scott (Image: West Mercia Police)

Prior to the statement's release, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) called for a "thorough review" into the circumstances around the murder of Alfie Steele. 

The spokesperson said: "The suffering that Alfie Steele endured in the months before he died is heart-breaking; a cruel ‘punishment’ regime inflicted by Dirk Howell and Alfie’s mother Carla Scott which culminated in his tragic death. 

“It’s vital that a thorough review into the circumstances around Alfie’s death establishes whether more could have been done by professionals to protect this little boy.

"This is so important because such findings can help prevent future tragedies.

“It’s crucial that everyone does all they can to prevent child abuse.

"We would urge anyone who has concerns for a child’s safety to contact the relevant authorities or the NSPCC Helpline.”


  • Anyone with a concern about a child can contact the NSPCC's free and confidential helpline on 0808 800 5000 or by email help@nspcc.org.uk.