Prison medics should have let Star's murderer DIE when she collapsed

‘Why did they save her?’ Great-grandfather of tragic Star Hobson says prison medics should have let murderer Savannah Brockhill DIE when she suffered two heart attacks in jail

  • Savannah Brockhill, 28, suffered two cardiac arrests in HMP Styal, Cheshire 
  • In both instances she was resuscitated and given life-saving CPR by medics
  • She was on remand and waiting to hear murder charges in Star Hobson trial
  • Brockhill was jailed for life after she was found guilty of murdering the toddler 
  • And now Star’s family have hit out at the medics’ decision to twice save Brockhill

The family of tragic toddler Star Hobson have hit out at the prison medics who saved her, arguing she should have been left to die after suffering two separate seizures while behind bars.

Savannah Brockhill, 28 was jailed for life after she was found guilty of murdering the 16-month-old during a campaign of abuse at her West Yorkshire home last June.   

Self-proclaimed ‘psycho’ Brockhill collapsed twice and suffered cardiac arrest at HMP Styal in Cheshire while on remand for the toddler’s murder just two days before the trial.

She was revived both times by prison medics, who rushed to her aid and performed lifesaving CPR on her.

Now, little Star’s great-grandfather Frank Smith, 68, told the Sun how he wished the medics would have let Brockhill die instead, claiming it was unfair in the wake of the harrowing death of his great-granddaughter.

Self-proclaimed ‘psycho’ Savannah Brockhill, 28, (pictured above) collapsed twice and suffered cardiac arrest at HMP Styal in Cheshire while on remand for the toddler’s murder just two days before the trial 

Frankie Smith – Star’s mother – was Brockhill’s girlfriend and was also jailed over her death

Innocent Star had been tormented and abused by Smith and Brockhill during her short life

Brockhill, a self-proclaimed ‘psycho’, regularly beat Smith and – when she continued to attract male attention – threatened to ‘kneecap’ anyone who ‘even looked at her’.

The amateur boxer also began physically abusing Star and went on to beat the defenceless toddler to death in one final act of sickening violence. 

Outside Bradford Crown Court Hollie Jones, 18, who babysat for Star and made the first of five referrals to social services, said Smith’s sentence was ‘a joke’. 

Frank, 68, was one of five relatives or close family friends who turned whistleblower and raised concerns over the treatment, and bruises that had appeared, on 16-month-old Star. 

She was jailed for a minimum of 25 years last week after being given a mandatory life sentence for murdering 16-month-old Star Hobson in a fit of temper. 

Brockhill is understood to have discharged herself from hospital against medical advice and returned to the closed category, all female HMP Styal in Cheshire.  

Amateur boxer Brockhill began physically abusing Star Hobson (left) and went on to beat the defenceless toddler to death in one final act of sickening violence

Brockhill was twice saved by prison paramedics at HMP Styal in Cheshire (pictured above)

Brockhill (pictured) regularly beat Smith and – when she continued to attract male attention – threatened to ‘kneecap’ anyone who ‘even looked at her’, jurors heard


Star Hobson was only 16-months-old when she was killed at her home in Keighley, West Yorkshire. Here are some of the key events in her short life:


May 21 – Star Hobson is born

November – Savannah Brockhill and Frankie Smith begin a relationship.


January 23 – Smith’s friend Holly Jones makes the first contact with social services over concerns about domestic violence and how much time she is left looking after Star. Police and social workers visit Star but no concerns are raised.

Early February – Star goes to live with her great-grandparents, David Fawcett and Anita Smith at their home in Baildon, Bradford, after Smith says she has split up with Brockhill.

April 26 – Star is removed from Anita Smith’s house by her mother and taken to live with Smith and Brockhill.

May 4 – Anita Smith contacts social services after she is told about Brockhill ‘slam-choking’ Star.

June – David Fawcett posts a picture of Star with bruises on Facebook alongside a happier shot and with the caption ‘From this to this in five weeks, what’s going on Frankie?’

June 21 – Star’s father, Jordan Hobson, contacts social services. Police take Star for a hospital examination. Smith says her daughter had hit her face on a coffee table.

June 23 – Another friend of the Smith family contacts social services with concerns.

August 14 – David Fawcett and Anita Smith see Frankie and Star for the last time.

August 28 – David Fawcett is sent a video of Star with bruises and confronts Brockhill.

September 2 – Another of Star’s great-grandfathers, Frank Smith, contacts social services after seeing video of bruises on the youngster’s face. Social workers make an unannounced visit.

September 15 – Social services closes the case after concluding the referral to be ‘malicious’.

September 22 – Star is seriously injured at the flat in Wesley Place, Keighley, and dies later in hospital.


December 14 – Following a trial at Bradford Crown Court Brockhill is convicted of Star’s murder while Smith is convicted of causing or allowing the toddler’s death.

The defenceless toddler bled to death after being kicked or punched by Brockhill with ‘massive’ force at home in Keighley, West Yorkshire, in September last year.  

Frankie Smith, 20, Star’s mother, will be freed in four years after a judge reduced her sentence to account for the ‘burden’ of knowing she played a significant role in the death of her daughter. 

Earlier this week, Star’s family slammed the ‘lenient’ sentences handed out to the pair, as they called on Attorney General to review the case under the unduly lenient sentencing scheme. 

And hitting out at medics’ decision to revive Star’s murderer, Mr Smith explained: ‘I wish they had let her die. Star’s injuries were so horrific they couldn’t revive her. And yet, Brockhill is saved. How unfair is that?’

He  had earlier said he hoped Star’s killers would ‘rot in jail’ and asked: ‘Is that all Star’s life is worth? Frankie will be out in four years – how is that justice?’ 

And he reserved his harshest judgement yet for Brockhill, telling reporters that the former bouncer ultimately deserved the death penalty 

During the trial, jurors heard that Smith’s family and friends had growing fears about bruising they saw on the little girl in the months before she died and made a series of complaints to social services.

In each case Brockhill and Smith managed to convince social workers that marks on Star were accidental or that the complaints were made maliciously by people who did not like their relationship.

Prosecutors described how the injuries that caused Star’s death involved extensive damage to her abdominal cavity ’caused by a severe and forceful blow or blows, either in the form of punching, stamping or kicking to the abdomen’.

Jurors also heard there were other injuries on her body which meant that ‘in the course of her short life, Star had suffered a number of significant injuries at different times’.

On September 2, Frank alerted social services to a video of Star with bruises on her face. 

When they visited her, her mother was said to have been in Scotland. The next day they went again unannounced and found her at home with Brockhill. 

During an unannounced social worker visit to their Keighley home on September 15 last year Star was so dazed by the abuse she had suffered she walked into a sofa.

She had bruises on her face and shins but the Bradford City Council worker believed Brockhill’s explanation she’d fallen down the stairs.

In fact she was being ‘choke slammed’, swung by her leg and hit in the face by the twisted couple.

They referred to her as a ‘brat’ and forced her to stand facing the wall for long periods of time during their reign of cruelty.

In total two friends and three relatives – including Star’s own father – had reported them to social services but they were still allowed to keep her.

Police released a harrowing picture of one of the bruises on Star’s face that sparked calls to social services from family

Tuesday’s verdicts fuelled mounting calls for sweeping reform, amid widespread outcry over the case of murdered six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes by his cruel stepmother earlier this month. 

It later emerged that the Children’s Services boss in charge of Star’s care quit his £121,000-a-year post just days before Smith and Brockhill went on trial.

Mark Douglas became Bradford Council’s third Director of Children’s Services to quit within a turbulent three year period.

The department was rocked by an Ofsted report in 2018 which branded it ‘inadequate’ and said some children under its care were ‘at risk of serious harm.’

Michael Jameson quit as director soon after the report was released and he was succeeded by Gladys Rhodes White, who left less than a year later.

On his arrival in May 2019, Mr Douglas, formerly Director of Children’s Social Care at Doncaster Children’s Services Trust, vowed to ‘develop good and outstanding services for the city and district.’ 

Jordan Hobson, who is a university student, split with Smith before she started a toxic relationship with Brockhill, a judge heard earlier this week.

Yesterday, the grieving father said: ‘The horrific death of my beautiful baby daughter has left me devastated and I will never recover from the callous and cruel way in which Star was taken from me.

‘No sentence that a court can impose will ever bring back my precious daughter.

‘I would now request privacy so that I can start to grieve and begin to try and pick up the pieces of my life.’

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