Beyond Youth Custody


On reception into custody in December 2014, Ash was referred to the Specialist Brain Injury Linkworker Service provided by The Disabilities Trust Foundation. He had been charged with a number of offences including wounding with intent. Ash was referred to the vulnerable prisoner unit due to ongoing investigation into historic head injuries, following episodes of impulsive and erratic behaviour. It emerged that Ash had sustained multiple head injuries, some of the earliest occurring when he was six months old, and the most recent during the previous year.

As a result of these injuries, Ash suffered seizures and struggled with memory problems, processing information and dealing with multiple tasks. In addition, Ash reported episodes of uncontrollable anger during which he was unaware of what he was doing.

The Linkworker secured a referral to neurology for Ash, and attended the appointment to support him and to share information with the consultant. The Linkworker contributed to a pre-sentence report, explaining Ash’s cognitive, emotional and behavioural problems following his brain injuries and also provided advice and guidance for his family on how to support Ash day-to-day.

As a result, Ash received anger and memory interventions support. He now uses techniques learnt to independently improve his memory. For example, he writes lists of things he needs to do and leaves these lists on his shoes so that he remembers to take them with him when he leaves. Ash feels this has improved his ability to manage his memory impairments independently on a day-to-day basis. He is now attending college. He has not reoffended.  

Tagged with the theme:

Resettlement of young offenders: informing practice, improving outcomes