Published Date: 05 February 2014
Hundreds more potential victims of abuse at a young offenders' centre in
County Durham during the late 1960s and the mid-1980s have come forward to
Detectives announced in August they were starting a new investigation into
allegations young men sent to Medomsley Detention Centre near Consett were abused by staff.
But following widespread media coverage last week, over 200 more people came
forward bringing the total number to 375.
The police said as a result all those who have rung over the last 10 days
will be seen by an officer and given the appropriate support and counselling.
Detective Superintendent Paul Goundry, Durham Constabulary, said: "Our
aims all along have been to gain a clearer picture of what happened at
Medomsley, obtain evidence which may lead to a criminal prosecution and, most
importantly, to leave the victims in a better place than they were before.
"The recent coverage in the media has brought forward another 230
people who might not otherwise have contacted us. That suggests these victims
have a level of confidence in us and feel we can help and support them.
"As our inquiries continue we are constantly learning, not only from
the victims but all the agencies we are working alongside such as the NSPCC and
the Sexual Assault Referral Centre at The Meadows. I think at the end of this
investigation we will have some very important learning points to take on
board, not just for ourselves but for the police nationally."
In 2003, a previous police investigation called Operation Halter led to the
conviction of Neville Husband, a prison officer at the centre.
Husband was initially jailed for eight years after being found guilty of
abusing five youngsters.
The publicity surrounding the trial then led to others coming forward and
Husband was subsequently jailed for a further two years for these attacks.
After being released from prison he died from natural causes in 2010.