A prisoner convicted of sexual offences and locked up for life committed suicide in a North Yorkshire prison two weeks after putting a Do Not Resuscitate order onto his medical record.

On April 16, notorious paedophile Peter Battensby was found dead in his cell just 13 months into his 21-year life sentence.

In their report, the Prison and Probation Ombudsman criticised HMP Full Sutton, in York, for not assessing why Battensby may have placed a DNR on his medical record.

Two weeks after the request was made, Battensby was found hanged in his cell.

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In 2019, Battensby was jailed for “evil” sexual assaults which dated back to 1987.

The offences – including indecent assault, rape, voyeurism, and sexual assault – were committed against girls aged 12 and 15 at the time.

He was sent to HMP Leeds in May 2019, and moved to HMP Full Sutton in October 2022. Prison staff at both prisons had no concerns about the prisoner’s risk of suicide and self-harm, citing that he had no substance abuse or mental health issues.

Whilst in prison, Battensby received appropriate care and medication for his diabetes.

But the PPO investigators raised concerns over Battensby’s request to healthcare staff for a Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR). A prison GP approved the 64-year-old’s request, but he did not discuss it with Battensby.

In their report, the PPO wrote: “We found that staff missed an opportunity to assess Mr Battensby’s risk of suicide after he asked for a DNACPR order. [Also], there was no documented evidence of Mr Battensby’s request for a DNACPR order or the decision to approve it.”

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On April 16, prison staff found Battensby sitting on a chair in his cell with a ligature around his neck.

Staff called a medical emergency code and healthcare staff attended immediately, but as rigor mortis had already set in, there were obvious signs that Mr Battensby had been dead for some time.

As the newly approved DNACPR order was displayed on his wall, the staff did not attempt CPR. Paramedics arrived shortly afterwards and confirmed that Mr Battensby had died.

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Battensby’s handwritten note requesting a DNACPR, which was “quite detailed” and “explained everything nicely” according to the GP that had seen it, has since gone missing and was not seen by inspectors.

Recommendations that the PPO made to Full Sutton were that the “Head of Healthcare should ensure that all prisoners requesting a DNACPR order are assessed, preferably face-to-face, to establish if they are at risk of suicide, that they have mental capacity, and that no mental health issues are apparent.”

They also noted that record-keeping should be improved, with staff providing a “full and accurate record of the DNACPR assessment in the prisoner’s medical record, including details for all staff who have provided input, the rationale behind the decision, and all correspondence from the prisoner.”