Stephen Port: Parents of Barking serial killer’s victim will sue police over investigation
- Credit: PA
The parents of one of serial killer Stephen Port’s victims plan to sue the Met over its handling of the case.
Port, 41, was today found guilty of murdering four young gay men to fulfil his depraved sexual fantasies.
He stalked his victims on dating websites and plied them with drinks spiked with fatal amounts of drug GHB to rape them while they were unconscious, before dumping their bodies in or near a graveyard within 500 metres of his flat in Cooke Street, Barking.
The deaths of Jack Taylor, Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari and Daniel Whitworth over 15 months bore striking similarities but police allegedly failed to make the link until relatives of his final victim demanded answers.
Mr Taylor’s family say they are “definitely” planning to sue after police treated the “caring” forklift truck driver’s death as “just another” drug overdose.
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They said: “We do believe Jack would still be here if they had done their job.
“The police should be held accountable for Jack’s death. We do understand it’s not them who took Jack’s life, but Stephen Port would have been stopped.”
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The family refused to accept Mr Taylor would have taken drugs willingly and put pressure on officers to treat his death as suspicious.
They say they weren’t taken seriously by police, with one of Mr Taylor’s sisters describing the police as “very dismissive”.
“We obviously think as a family – the other drug overdoses including Jack’s – we felt from the beginning with Jack it was seen as just another one,” they said.
“If it had been a woman, then more would have been done. We had to fight from the beginning. We kept pushing for an investigation.
“We had an attitude that, unless you can come back with black and white evidence that Jack sat down there and did what they say he did, then listen to what we say. Don’t dismiss it. Find the truth. Because we know Jack would not have entered that park area at that time and done drugs.”
They said they feel only “hatred” toward Port, adding: “He’s not just taken Jack’s life – he’s ruined all our lives.
“He’s very cold. Knowing we are all sitting there and going through his stories is just very cruel.
“Alongside losing Jack and fighting for the investigation, it’s one of the hardest things we have ever had to do. It’s torture.”
On what they hope to gain at the end of the trial, the sisters said: “Justice for Jack and justice for everyone. It would be a bit of closure for us.
“I do not think he should ever be allowed out. He has shown no remorse. It’s obvious he would be a danger to society.”
An Independent Police Complaints Commission inquiry is ongoing into the handling of the case and 17 officers are facing investigation into possible misconduct.
Port will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Friday.