No family members attended the Hakeem Hussain inquest, which looked into the death of a seven-year-old Birmingham boy who froze to death outside his uncle’s house.
Hakeem Hussain was pronounced dead at 7:40 am on November 26th, at his uncle’s house on Cook Street, Nechells. It is believed that he was outside for some time before emergency services were called, on one of the coldest days of the year. He was found inside the house, suffering from cardiac arrest and suspected hypothermia. Hakeem was pronounced dead ten minutes after the ambulance was called. Hakeem’s mother, Laura Heath, was arrested on suspicion of willful neglect and his uncle Timothy Busk was arrested on suspicion of wilfully ill-treating a child. The two were both released on bail while the investigation is ongoing.
The Hakeem Hussein inquest started on December 14th at the Birmingham Coroner’s Court. Coroner Emma Brown commented that the post-mortem examination had proven inconclusive and more specialized tests were being done to determine the cause of death. Brown further said that because the criminal investigation was still ongoing, she would not be able to set a date for the full inquest, and adjourned it until January 26th. None of Hussain’s family members attended the inquest.
Aroosa Kausar, Hakeem’s aunt, said that his father was “absolutely devastated and already misses him greatly.” Kausar said that she had spoken to the boy’s mother since his death, but declined to speak about the meeting. “She’s uncomfortable about speaking [to the public],” Kauser said. “She has people accusing her of all sorts when she is mourning her son’s death.”
Hakeem’s death has rocked his community. Det. Insp Jim Munro, from the Public Protection Unit of Midlands West Police, told reporters that they were working with other local agencies to make sure that “people close to Hakeem are given the support they need. He added, “We are keen to hear from anyone who knew Hakeem as we continue to build up a picture of the circumstances surrounding his death.”
Hakeem was well-loved at his school,
Kausar says that the family has been “torn apart” by Hakeem’s death. “All we have left are memories of him, but we will hold him dearly in our hearts,” she told reporters. “His laugh will stay with us forever.”
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