Rare safeguarding review to take place into death of Raunds man who died in Wellingborough hotel

The Safeguarding Adults Review into Jonathan Upex's death will be the first ever in Northamptonshire into a homeless death.

Jonathan Upex suffered from bipolar disorder and had been sleeping on the streets in the months before his death.
Jonathan Upex suffered from bipolar disorder and had been sleeping on the streets in the months before his death.

A rare safeguarding review will take place into the death of a 46-year-old man who died at a Wellingborough hotel over the Christmas period.

Jonathan Upex was found dead by a social worker and a member of staff at the Euro Hotel on December 31.He had been sleeping at the budget hotel in Midland Road for a number of days before his death with the cost covered by East Northamptonshire Council, which like all local authorities has a duty to help people who do not have anywhere to sleep.

The Northamptonshire Adult Safeguarding Board (NSAB) has now decided after meeting earlier this month, to commission a Safeguarding Adults Review (SAR) which will consider whether Jonathan’s death could have been prevented.

Jonathan with friend Wendy Steele who had called police after becoming worried about not being able to contact him.

This is the first ever SAR into the death of someone who has died on Northamptonshire’s streets. Homeless charity, The Hope Centre estimates that 18 homeless people died in Northampton in 2018 with the number across the county thought to be higher. However NSAB has refused to make public its most report into the numbers of homeless deaths in Northants.

The decision by NSAB to hold an Safeguarding Adult Review has been welcomed by Jonathan’s family who want answers. They scattered his ashes in Titchmarsh churchyard yesterday (Feb 17) and will give the funeral donations to local charities that helped him in the time before his death.

His mother Sheila said he had suffered with bi-polar disorder since his later teens and had been failed.

She said: “Your children should never go before you. It was a terrible way for him to die on his own.

“Hopefully the review can make a difference and make sure no one else goes through this.”

Jonathan’s friend Wendy Steele, who had got to know Jonathan when he had been sleeping rough in Wellingborough, was one of the last people to see him.

He had gone into the Wellingborough church where Wendy is a member on Christmas Day and after helping walk him back to Euro Hotel, Wendy then went home and returned with a roast dinner, as she felt he had not eaten very well for days.

She had promised him she would return on Boxing Day but had not been able to contact him and after going back again on December 27 had called the police and social services.

A control room police inspector however decided the criteria to force entry to his hotel room had not been met. Jonathan was found dead four days later.

Jonathan’s mother said: “It might give us some answers. All we want to know is why? “Wendy called the police, so why didn’t they go and see?”

A spokesperson on behalf of the Northamptonshire Safeguarding Adults Board said: “The Safeguarding Adults Review has now been approved and so will go ahead. A safeguarding review is not an investigation and will not place blame but supports agencies to understand what lessons can be learnt and how professionals and their agencies can better work together.”

The SAR will look into the actions of the agencies who were involved with Jonathan before his death took. A full report will then be published.

An inquest into Jonathan’s death has been opened by Northamptonshire coroner Anne Pember and will be carried out in the coming months.