Pembrokeshire mum prepares legal fight over teenage son's tragic death
Updated 3:01pm Wednesday 16th July 2014 in County News
THE mother of a 14-year-old boy who was found hanged at Pembroke School is pursuing legal action against Pembrokeshire County Council.
Derek Brundrett, who had been in the authority’s care since April 2012, was found in a small wooded area near the school reception by his friends last December.
His mum, Kristina Wray, has been granted legal aid to take the council to court.
She said: “This is about looking at how they failed Derek in the system, it’s about where they should have given him support but didn’t.
“There were so many flaws in Derek’s care. There was a complete lack of support and no referrals when there were things they could have done.”
She told the Western Telegraph Derek had previously attempted suicide, had a history of self-harming which had been overlooked and attempts to get him help failed because he “did not meet the criteria”.
“There was something wrong with Derek mentally, aside from all the teenage hormones,” said Kristina.
“I put it to the social services that he needed help, again this was overlooked. There are a lot of questions which need to be answered.”
The next step is for Derek’s inquest to be heard under article two of the European Court of Human Rights which would ask “whether the authorities knew, or ought to have known, of a real and immediate risk to the life of an individual and that they failed to take measures which could have avoided that risk”.
Following his tragic death, more than 1,200 people joined a dedicated Facebook page and people were asked to post ideas for a project in his memory.
Kristina and others have since been working on Dezza’s Cabin, a place for young people to access advice on bullying and self harm, as well as counselling services.
“I just want to get this cabin sorted, I want to try to move on with my life, to get the kids what they need and try to get answers from the council,” she said.
“At the moment I take each day as it comes, I get up and do what I need to do and go to bed again.”
A Pembrokeshire County Council spokesman said the council was “unable to comment as the matter is currently before HM Coroner”.
Marathon boost to Dezza's Cabin fund
On Sunday (July 13) Derek’s godfather Paul Johnston-Naylor, 36, completed the marathon leg of the Tenby Long Course Weekend in 4hrs28, raising more than £1,600 in aid of Dezza’s Cabin.
Kristina, who is hoping the scheme will be up and running by Christmas, said: “The amount of support we’ve had over the last couple of months has been unbelievable. Everybody wants to help, absolutely everybody."