The UK appeals court rejected individual appeals from Alfie Evans’ parents to treat him abroad, and police have warned they are monitoring “malicious” social media posts about the situation.
The three justices presiding over the appeals case issued their ruling on Wednesday afternoon, despite an Italian military air ambulance standing by to transport Alfie to Gesu Bambino pediatric hospital in the event that they overturned the UK High Court’s previous ruling, according to Mirror.
UK police issued a warning to Alfie Evans’ supporters before the court announced their ruling, saying they are monitoring all social media posts about Alfie and that “malicious communications and threatening behavior will be investigated and where necessary will be acted upon.”
Both lawyers for Tom Evans and Kate James argued that Alfie’s situation had changed, since he has been breathing on his own after doctors removed his life support at 9:17 p.m. local time on Monday.
Alfie confounded medical predictions that he would die shortly after being extubated which, lawyers said, called into question High Court Justice Anthony Hayden’s ruling that Alfie be denied the chance of treatment in Italy. The appeals court judges maintained the position, however, that “there is an acceptance that Alfie is dying” in light of reports that Alfie was struggling and needed immediate medical intervention. The judges also stated that neither the Vatican nor Italy had any jurisdiction with regard to legal decisions about Alfie. (RELATED: Judge Rejects Final Plea To Treat Alfie Evans, Even After He Defied Doctors’ Expectations By Breathing On His Own)
While all legal options for Tom and Kate to seek treatment abroad for Alfie seem exhausted, they may still be able to take Alfie home.
Meanwhile, supporters of Alfie, who call themselves Alfie’s Army, have returned to Alder Hey Hospital to protest in support of the child. Some of the demonstrators also flew two Polish flags to show Poland’s support since Polish President Andrzej Duda tweeted earlier in the day in support of Alfie and demanded that he be rescued.
Alfie Evans must be saved! His brave little body has proved again that the miracle of life can be stronger than death. Perhaps all that’s needed is some good will on the part of decision makers. Alfie, we pray for you and your recovery!
— Andrzej Duda (@AndrzejDuda) April 25, 2018
In addition to Poland and Italy, Germany also tried to aid the child. A German air ambulance crew arrived at Alder Hey to speak with the family and to bring a ventilator. Hospital staff had them escorted out of the building by police.
Chairman of Alder Hey hospital Sir David Henshaw and chief executive Louise Shepherd issued an open letter expressing sympathy for Alfie Evans’ family and defending hospital staff involved in his treatment, saying that they were subjected to a “barrage of highly abusive and threatening language and behavior.”
“Yet in the last two weeks we have found ourselves at the centre of a social media storm that has included many untrue statements about our work and the motivations of our staff. This has led to often inappropriate interventions from a range of external bodies and individuals, some of which have caused significant disruption to our children, families and staff,” the letter read according to Mirror.
Police warned that they were monitoring social media in light of earlier reports of the alleged abuses against hospital staff.
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