Riverside Children’s Home in Rocester was closed by Staffordshire County Council in 1989. It had been the subject of complaints of sexual and physical abuse in the 1980s. As a result of these complaints, a major police investigation named ‘Operation Thor‘ commenced in 1999. The investigation was ran by Staffordshire Police and resulted in eight convictions.
Former social worker Joseph Hopkins was found guilty of rape and other assaults between 1981 and 1985. Former resident Timothy O’Farrell was sentenced to four years in prison for three serious sexual assaults and five indecent assaults. Former deputy head Thomas Watson was also convicted of physical abuse in relation to caning.
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