Fatal Altrincham fire: Woman warned about David Potts by social workers

Dave Potts The inquest heard Potts was upset when Tracy Jones ended the relationship

Related Stories

Social workers warned a woman her boyfriend was dangerous weeks before he set a fire at her home in which she and her son died, an inquest has heard.

David Potts, 39, set fire to Tracy Jones' home in Barlow Street, Broadheath, Altrincham in 2011.

Ms Jones and her son Shaun Van Stratten, 15, were killed. Potts also died from burns in the blaze.

Stockport Coroner's Court heard Potts threatened Ms Jones and her children after she left him.

Ms Jones' son Zachary, 4, and daughter Caitlin, 18, were injured but survived the blaze on 19 September 2011.

The inquest was told Potts was "profoundly upset" when Ms Jones ended their relationship after Trafford Social Services warned her about him in August 2011.

Personality disorder

As well as threatening Ms Jones and her children, the inquest heard he also made threats to burn down the probation office and made inquiries into getting a hand grenade.

The inquest was also told Potts had a child with an underage girl from Lancashire in 2007 and had threatened to harm himself and the child.

Potts had a long history of mental health problems, substance abuse, alcoholism and self-harming, assistant coroner Joanne Kearsley told the inquest.

His mother Christine Potts told the inquest Potts had had a heart attack and did not believe he had long to live.

She said he never mentioned harming others, telling the inquest he only mentioned harming himself.

Scene of fatal house fire in Broadheath Potts had previously threatened to harm himself and his child, the inquest heard

A serious case review published in January criticised health officials who "failed to grasp the seriousness of the situation" and Greater Manchester Police for inaction prior to the blaze.

The review said Potts, who had been diagnosed with a personality disorder, had indicated his intention to set fire to himself and harm police officers a month earlier.

However, the review said it was not possible to say whether the incident could have been prevented.

The inquest is expected to last six weeks.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

Weather

Manchester

26 °C 16 °C

Features

  • ScissorsWithout Scotland?

    How might things change for the rest of the UK?


  • Diagrams showing bowler and batsmanAnyone for Vigoro?

    The bizarre Edwardian attempt to merge tennis and cricket


  • Payton McKinnonKilling heat

    Why so many American children die in hot cars


  • Dr Mahinder Watsa Dr Sex

    The wisecracking 90-year-old whose agony column is a cult hit


  • Prince George and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge outside St Mary'sIn pictures

    Prince George has had an eventful first year


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.