Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Dr. Harold Shipman, the World's Most Prolific Serial Killer

Murder Unlimited

British police are so convinced that Shipman's killing spree started long ago that a special helpline has been set up for those concerned about how friends and relatives died while under the killer's care.

The Baker report, noted earlier, is filled with chilling statistics. 

When he compared Shipman's patient list with those of doctors with similar lists, Professor Baker concluded that Shipman had 236 more in-home patient deaths than would normally be expected.  Most of these deaths involved women over 75.

Chief Medical Officer Professor Liam Donaldson stated: "The questions raised in the report will be distressing reading to the patients and relatives who were under Shipman's care over the years, but it is important for their sake that this work has been done and is published...'there must be serious concerns about deaths of some patients during Harold Shipman's entire career as a GP.'

Judge Dame Janet Smith
Judge Dame Janet Smith (CAVENDISH PRESS/UK)

High Court judge Dame Janet Smith heads a proposed inquiry expected to start in March 2001 and last over two years.

Initially, the government said the inquiry would be held behind closed doors, but in September 2000, concerned relatives won their battle to have it held in public.

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