5 Essex Court

Alison Hewitt

Call 1984

Public / Administrative

Alison regularly advises and appears in the Administrative Court in relation to claims for judicial review or applications under section 13 of the Coroners Act 1988, usually acting on behalf of Coroners or Police Constabularies.

Reported cases over the last few years include the following:

Mueller v Area Coroner for Manchester West [2017] EWHC 3000 (Admin) - an application under s.13 of the Coroners Act 1988 in which the President of the QBD gave guidance on the conduct of “documentary” inquests.

R (on the application of P and others) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2017] EWCA Civ 321 - represented the Metropolitan Commissioner as part of linked appeals which considered the lawfulness of the revised statutory scheme for the disclosure of convictions and its compatibility with Article 8 ECHR.

R (SofS for Transport) v HM Senior Coroner for Norfolk [2016] EWHC 2279 (Admin) - the Lord Chief Justice ruled that coroners’ powers under schedule 5 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 did not enable them to order the Air Accidents Investigation Branch to disclose cockpit voice and flight data recordings. The Court also gave guidance concerning overlapping investigatory jurisdictions.

R (NE and NM) v Birmingham Magistrates’ Court and Chief Constable of West Midlands Police [2015] EWHC 688 (Admin) - the President of the QBD ruled upon the proper approach to be taken to an application by a serious sexual offender for release from the indefinite notification requirements in the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

HM Senior Coroner for Cumbria v Smith [2015] EWHC 2465 (Admin) - an application under s.13 of the Coroners Act 1988 for a fresh inquest into the death of Poppi Worthington, a 13 month old baby suspected to have suffered abuse.

Flower v HM Senior Coroner for Devon [2015] EWHC 3666 (Admin) - the Court clarified the law by ruling that a decision by a coroner not to resume an inquest after criminal proceedings does not make him functus officio.

R (Krol) v The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis [2014] EWHC 4552 (Admin) - the court ruled that the police’s refusal to expunge a caution for the offence of actual bodily harm by a mother in punishing her young daughter did not breach her Article 8 rights.

Brown v HM Coroner for Norfolk and the Chief Constable of Norfolk Constabulary [2014] EWHC 187 (Admin) - an application for a fresh inquest under s.13 of the Coroners Act 1988. The judgment provides guidance from the Chief Coroner concerning pre-inquest review hearings.

Wilkinson v HM Coroner for Manchester (South) [2012] EWHC 2755 (Admin) -  the use of the “unlawful killing” conclusion in cases where the death has resulted from careless driving and concluded that driving offences causing death could not justify that verdict.