Hinckley deaths: Dad could have spoken to son to save boys

Two boys found dead with their father at a house were unlawfully killed, a coroner has concluded.

The bodies of Adam and Matthew Stokes were discovered holding hands under a duvet in a bed at their home in Welwyn Road in Hinckley.

Their father, 43-year-old David Stokes, was also found dead in the house from a single stab wound. Coroner Tankya Rawden concluded he had killed himself.

David’s father, Phil Stokes, told the inquest Police should have informed him about the stand-off “much earlier”.

He said he and his wife Susan were called by police at about 1am to ask if they knew where the children were.

They were not asked to go to the house but felt compelled to go.

However they were asked to go home and when police visited their house at 5:30am, that’s when they learned that their grandchildren 11-year-old Adam and five-year-old Matthew had died.

In a statement read out in court, Phil Stokes said he felt the outcome may have been different if he was allowed to talk to his son during police negotiations with him.

“I feel we should have been informed about the incident much earlier and should have been allowed to speak to David.”

Matthew Stokes, five, and his 11-year-old brother Adam were found dead at their home in Hinckley

However, Ms Rawden said Leicestershire Police’s actions “did not cause or contribute to the deaths”.

The court had previously heard how David Stokes had also locked his estranged wife Sally Stokes in the house and stabbed her, before she managed to escape.

Ms Rawden told Sally Stokes: “I cannot begin to imagine what the last three years have been like for you. What happened was a tragedy. I am sorry this has happened to your family.”

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