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Relatives of Amber Gibson who was removed from abusive household to social care where she was raped by a stranger and sexually assaulted and murdered by her own brother blast officials for failing the teenager

The social services department involved in the case of tragic Amber Gibson has ‘blood on its hands’, according to relatives of the young girl murdered by her elder brother.

The accusation came as it was announced that an independent review of the circumstances of Amber’s death while under the care of South Lanarkshire Council will be completed after further interviews with witnesses in the criminal case.

Connor Gibson, 20, was yesterday convicted of attacking his sister Amber, 16, in woodland in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, in November 2021.

He removed her clothing, sexually assaulted her with the intention of raping her, inflicted blunt-force trauma to her head and body, and strangled her.

Even after her death, the sickening ordeal was not yet over as Stephen Corrigan, 45, the man who discovered the body in woodland violated her remains and was convicted of attempting to defeat the ends of justice by intimately touching and concealing the body, instead of contacting the emergency services.

The social services department involved in the case of tragic Amber Gibson (pictured) has ‘blood on its hands’, according to relatives of the young girl murdered by her elder brother

Amber (front right) and her brother Connor Gibson (back left) had spent much of their lives in care, but a source from their extended biological family today told MailOnline that social workers from South Lanarkshire Council blocked their maternal grandparents’ efforts to have the children stay with them. The siblings are pictured with their foster parents Carol (front left) and Craig Niven (back right)

Amber (front right) and her brother Connor Gibson (back left) had spent much of their lives in care, but a source from their extended biological family today told MailOnline that social workers from South Lanarkshire Council blocked their maternal grandparents’ efforts to have the children stay with them. The siblings are pictured with their foster parents Carol (front left) and Craig Niven (back right)

Amber and her brother had spent much of their lives in care, but a source from their extended biological family today told MailOnline that social workers from South Lanarkshire Council blocked their maternal grandparents’ efforts to have the children stay with them.

‘The social work department has blood on its hands,’ claimed the family member who asked to remain anonymous.

‘Ambers’ grandparents, Mr and Mrs Adams, are lovely people and did their best for the children, but they needed more help from the authorities and didn’t get it.’

‘It put an enormous financial strain on the Adams, when they had the kids, but they were offered no help. The council seemed to prefer to spend hundreds and hundreds of pounds placing Amber and Connor with foster parents, rather than their own family.’

Mr and Mrs Adams refused to comment when approached by MailOnline.

Amber was aged just three, and her brother five, when they were removed from an abusive family household where they would witness their father Peter Gibson beating their mother Anne-Marie Adams black and blue, dragging her by the hair, putting his hands around her throat.

Peter Gibson was jailed for 10 years only a few months ago for a litany of violent sexual crimes.

Now his son Connor also awaits a life sentence for the brutal killing of his own sister. By the time she was murdered, blameless Amber had spent almost all her life in the care system and had already been a victim of rape.

Connor Gibson, 20, (pictured) was yesterday convicted of attacking his sister Amber, 16, in woodland in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, in November 2021. He removed her clothing, sexually assaulted her with the intention of raping her, inflicted blunt-force trauma to her head and body, and strangled her

Connor Gibson, 20, (pictured) was yesterday convicted of attacking his sister Amber, 16, in woodland in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, in November 2021. He removed her clothing, sexually assaulted her with the intention of raping her, inflicted blunt-force trauma to her head and body, and strangled her

Connor and Amber Gibson are seen talking along a street in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire at 9.55pm on November 26, 2021

Connor and Amber Gibson are seen talking along a street in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire at 9.55pm on November 26, 2021

Connor is pictured on CCTV later at 11.44pm that evening (November 26, 2021) without Amber

Connor is pictured on CCTV later at 11.44pm that evening (November 26, 2021) without Amber

Amber, said foster parents Craig and Carol Niven, was the ‘most giving, caring, loving supportive and admirable person’ who had ‘the most amazing outlook on life’.

The devastated couple said they believed the siblings had been ‘let down throughout their lives by the system’.

Just five months before her death, Amber had been raped by 20-year-old Jamie Starrs at his home in Bothwell and her statement proved crucial in bringing the rapist to justice.

Giving evidence at the trial of Connor Gibson, Mr Niven described the siblings as ‘not a good mix’ and said that he wouldn’t feel comfortable leaving them in each other’s company.

It was while they were together in November 2021 that Gibson pounced on his little sister, strangling and attacking her. He had also ripped off her clothes.

Her story began on New Year’s Day 2005 at Wishaw General Hospital in Lanarkshire where her brother and eventual killer had been born two years earlier.

Her parents, Peter Gibson and his much younger partner Ann Marie Adams, are believed to have met online and, by the time Amber arrived, a pattern of abuse was well-established. At their home in North Berwick Crescent, East Kilbride, Gibson inflicted appalling violence on the mother of his children – punching her in the face and kicking her in the body – between August 2001 and August 2007.

The children were taken out of their parental home and put into care and in 2008 the Nivens were approached to look after the pair in another Lanarkshire town. Amber and her brother moved into their Larkhall home but concerns about the older sibling’s behaviour soon arose.

Even after her death, the sickening ordeal was not yet over as Stephen Corrigan, 45, (pictured) the man who discovered the body in woodland violated her remains and was convicted of attempting to defeat the ends of justice by intimately touching and concealing the body, instead of contacting the emergency services

Even after her death, the sickening ordeal was not yet over as Stephen Corrigan, 45, (pictured) the man who discovered the body in woodland violated her remains and was convicted of attempting to defeat the ends of justice by intimately touching and concealing the body, instead of contacting the emergency services

Just five months before her death, Amber had been raped by 20-year-old Jamie Starrs (pictured) at his home in Bothwell and her statement proved crucial in bringing him to justice

Just five months before her death, Amber had been raped by 20-year-old Jamie Starrs (pictured) at his home in Bothwell and her statement proved crucial in bringing him to justice

For a time they attended separate schools. Amber went to Moore House Academy, around 25 miles away in West Lothian’s Bathgate, while her brother was a pupil at Kear Campus in Blantyre, Lanarkshire – a secondary school for those with social, emotional and behavioural needs.

Former school friends described him as a loner who was prone to sudden fits of rage.

‘He would talk about killing other pupils which, to be fair, I saw as an over-exaggeration, but looking back on it now maybe the stuff he said wasn’t exaggeration at all,’ one classmate said.

A former female pupil described him as a ‘disgusting human’ who ‘threatened to rip’ her baby from her while she was pregnant.

Ultimately, the foster care arrangement broke down and Amber moved into Hamilton-based Hillhouse children’s unit when she was 14. Her brother remained with the Nivens until his 18th birthday in 2020.

It was while in the care of the state that Amber was raped by 20-year-old Jamie Starrs, who attacked her in June 2021 after being released on bail for another sex attack.

At the time of her murder, her brother was a resident at Hamilton’s Blue Triangle project, a hostel for homeless youngsters in Lanarkshire, while she was living at the Hillhouse unit.

Angel McKean, 19, a friend of Amber’s there, said the siblings’ relationship was turbulent.

But she said when she last spoke to Amber, hours before she was killed, she had been looking forward to seeing her brother.

Care home manager Ian Currie, 55, said Connor Gibson called the Hillhouse unit to speak to his sister on the day she was killed.

A short time later, Amber left with him, despite Mr Currie’s attempts to discourage her from doing so. She was never seen alive again.

Amber's foster parents said she was the ‘most giving, caring, loving supportive and admirable person’ who had ‘the most amazing outlook on life’. Amber is pictured above

Amber’s foster parents said she was the ‘most giving, caring, loving supportive and admirable person’ who had ‘the most amazing outlook on life’. Amber is pictured above

Four days later, Gibson wrote a tribute to his sister on social media: ‘Amber. You will fly high for the rest of time. We all miss you. Especially me. I love you ginger midget, GBNF [gone but not forgotten] xx.’ Hours before he was arrested for her murder, he shared another post in which he urged townsfolk to ‘leave a light on’ for Amber.

It was while Connor Gibson was awaiting trial for murder that his natural father, aged 62, was jailed for physical and sexual abuse.

The High Court in Glasgow heard how he had raped a woman in East Kilbride, after tying her up and blindfolding her. He also grabbed this victim by the neck restricting her breathing.

Peter Gibson was also convicted of indecently assaulted a young boy and punching and kicking him to his injury. Other convictions included lewd and libidinous behaviour towards another boy.

Mr and Mrs Niven were in court yesterday to hear the guilty verdict on their former foster son. In a statement, they said: ‘When they arrived at our home, Amber was three and Connor aged five.

‘Connor stated “We are safe” – they were until he took the safety away.’

They added: ‘Amber deserved to live a life of hope and opportunities.

‘As a family, we will never be able to get over how this was taken from her. We are relieved the people involved in what happened to her are now behind bars.’

Pictured: Police on the scene at Cadzow Glen park in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, where the body of Amber Gibson was discovered at around 10.10am on Sunday, November 26

Pictured: Police on the scene at Cadzow Glen park in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire, where the body of Amber Gibson was discovered at around 10.10am on Sunday, November 26

CCTV captured Connor Gibson (pictured) walking home alone after killing Amber

CCTV captured Connor Gibson (pictured) walking home alone after killing Amber

CCTV captured Connor apparently disposing clothing after killing Amber in November 2021

CCTV captured Connor apparently disposing clothing after killing Amber in November 2021

South Lanarkshire Council described the case as ‘truly tragic’ and confirmed that in 2021 it established an independent review of the circumstances, which can now conclude since the court case has been closed.

Professor Soumen Sengupta, Director of Health and Social Care for South Lanarkshire, said: “This has been a truly tragic case, and our thoughts remain with all those who knew and loved Amber. There are established procedures in place for tragic events of this nature which are designed to ensure that events are fully understood and, if necessary, learned from.

‘In this case, after Amber’s death the Care Inspectorate and the Chair of the Child Protection Committee (CPC) were informed. The CPC acted to establish an independent review under an extremely experienced independent expert in the field. They have already carried out most of the work involved and will now be able to conclude the review, including interviewing people who were witnesses in the criminal case.

‘The results of the review will be delivered to the CPC once complete and then shared with the Public Protection Chief Officer Group. It is anticipated that the findings will be publicly reported in an appropriate format.’

South Lanarkshire Council declined to comment on the family’s claims but a source with knowledge of the case insisted there had never been an application from members of Amber’s family for custody of her or her brother. 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-12341169/Amber-Gibson-relatives-blast-social-services.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Relatives of Amber Gibson who was removed from abusive household to social care where she was raped by a stranger and sexually assaulted and murdered by her own brother blast officials for failing the teenager

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