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Partner of Grindr killer Port's youngest victim claims he was dismissed by police because they were unmarried and gay


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The partner of the youngest victim of serial killer Stephen Port has claimed he was “pushed out” by police investigating his boyfriend’s death because the pair were an unmarried gay couple.

Ricky Waumsley told the inquest into his boyfriend Daniel Whitworth’s death that he felt excluded by investigators and was not allowed to see an apparent suicide note left by the young chef from Gravesend until the year after he was found dead.

An inquest is being led into the deaths of four young men at the hands of Stephen Port.
An inquest is being led into the deaths of four young men at the hands of Stephen Port.

He told jurors at an inquest into the death of his partner on Monday: “If it was a straight couple I wouldn’t have been pushed out as much as I was at the time.

“They dismissed me in every single way. I believe and I stand by it, it was because we were a gay unmarried couple.”

Former Dartford Grammar student Daniel, 21, of Nine Elms Road, Gravesend, was the third young man to be given a fatal dose of the date rape drug by sexual predator Port during a 16-month killing spree.

Mr Whitworth’s body was discovered in Barking, east London, on September 20 2014, after he was given a fatal overdose of GHB by Port.

The so-called Grinder killer left a fake suicide note on Mr Whitworth’s body falsely claiming that he had taken his own life after accidentally killing another man, Gabriel Kovari – who was in fact another of Port’s victims.

Stephen Port faked a suicide note and left it on the body of his third victim Daniel Whitworth (Met Police/PA)
Stephen Port faked a suicide note and left it on the body of his third victim Daniel Whitworth (Met Police/PA)

Mr Waumsley said the police should have verified the handwriting on the note more carefully, rather than just asking the 21-year-old’s grieving parents.

He told the jury: “I just felt that they took the suicide note at face value. I believe they didn’t do any more than that. That was my thought on it.

“I thought they could have done more, they could have at least checked the handwriting and made sure that it was correct, and not just asked people at the time who were grieving and who are not in that profession looking at handwriting.”

In the days after the young chef’s death, the police refused to show Mr Waumsley the suicide note, the inquest heard.

He said: “I was really angry because he was my partner of four years and I wanted to see what he had to say for himself.”

On September 30 2014, Mr Waumsley visited the site where Mr Whitworth had been found with his father Adam and stepmother Amanda.

Daniel Whitworth, from Gravesend was the third victim of Stephen Port
Daniel Whitworth, from Gravesend was the third victim of Stephen Port

Police officers took the parents off to discuss the investigation privately without Mr Waumsley, which he said “really pissed me off and made me feel pushed out by the police”.

It was only in the following year at the first inquest into Mr Whitworth’s death when Mr Waumsley saw the note for the first time, and said it was “really impersonal”, did not mention any family members and he could not be sure it was his partner’s handwriting.

During the 2015 inquest it also emerged that officers had not DNA tested the bed sheet on which Mr Whitworth had been found, or the drugs bottle that was discovered with his body.

There was also some bruising on his chest that suggested manual handling but this had not been investigated.

Outside the hearing, he told officers Paul Slaymaker and Rolf Schamberger “You didn’t do your f****** job properly.”

He told the police that Mr Whitworth had never done drugs apart from one joint in Amsterdam, and he had never heard of the drug GHB before Daniel died.

Port’s victims, left to right, Daniel Whitworth, Jack Taylor, Anthony Walgate and Gabriel Kovari. Photo: Metropolitan Police/PA (52922585)
Port’s victims, left to right, Daniel Whitworth, Jack Taylor, Anthony Walgate and Gabriel Kovari. Photo: Metropolitan Police/PA (52922585)

But when Mr Waumsley’s stepmother Amanda had asked the police what the drug was, they had told her to ask him “because he should know”.

Jurors were read part of a witness statement he gave to the police watchdog in 2017, then called the Independent Police Complaints Commission, that said: “I didn’t understand how they could just brush her question off and say that a typical gay person would know about drugs like that.

“I believe the police made too many assumptions from the content of the letter and not just because Daniel was gay.

“I think they must have looked at the letter and taken it at face value and thought that was job done.”

In 2016, Port, now aged 46, was found guilty of murdering Anthony Walgate, 23, Mr Kovari, 22, Mr Whitworth, 21, and final victim Jack Taylor between June 2014 and September 2015.

Inquests into the men’s deaths are now being heard to determine whether lives could have been saved had police acted differently.

The inquests at Barking Town Hall continue.

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