Child rapist dies of coronavirus in jail after targeting multiple children

A child rapist who targeted multiple children has died of coronavirus in prison.

Brian Learmonth, 65, contracted the virus while serving a 12-and-a-half-year sentence at HMP Stafford.

He admitted to sexual offences against children, including three counts of rape, in 2015, before dying on October 8.

Learmonth also committed indecent assault and took indecent pictures of kids, Stoke Sentinel reports.

The rapist also distributed indecent photographs of victims in the late 1980s and 1990s when he was in Shrewsbury.

The death of the pervert, from Shawbury, may be the first as a result of Covid-19 in an English or Welsh prison since May.

Twenty-three inmates have died of suspected coronavirus since the pandemic's start.

But no deaths appeared to have been recorded between June and September.

About 630 prisoners in jails or Youth Custody Services tested positive for the virus last month.

That represented the highest monthly total of its kind since the disease came to the UK.

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There are now 89 prisons and sites that have confirmed cases of the illness. 

A Prison Service spokesman said: “HMP Stafford prisoner Brian Learmonth died in prison on October 8. The Prisons and Probation Ombudsman has been informed."

The medical cause of Learmonth's death, which has been reported to the coroner, has been given as cardio respiratory arrest due to coronavirus.

Hypertension is also thought to have been a contributing factor to his death.

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Stafford is currently subject to tier one restrictions, but its weekly infection rate has shot up to one of the highest in the county, with 158.1 cases per 100,000 people. That's up from a weekly rate of 138.4.

Dr Johnny McMahon, Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for health, care and wellbeing, said: “Cases in Stafford are a genuine concern. People need to act now to prevent the risk of Covid-19 cases increasing further, which could lead to the government stepping in with additional restrictions.

“Simple measures do make a huge impact and by educating and encouraging all our communities there is a great chance to get the situation back under control.”

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