Coroner: Burnley teenager may not have intended to kill herself

Kayley Howson

Kayley Howson

First published in

A TEENAGER who was found hanging in her family home may not have meant to kill herself, an inquest heard.

Kayley Howson, 18, died four years after making an allegation of rape and giving evidence in court, only to see the accused found not guilty.

She had suffered bouts of depression and had been diagnosed with emotionally unstable personality disorder.

Ten days before her death Kayley was taken off the medicine depakote after complaining of feeling sick and being unable to take the large tablets. Her family had been concerned that she had began to suffer greater mood swings as a result of coming off the medication.

She was found hanging at the top of the stairs at the home in Rosehill Road, Burnley, shortly after midnight on Saturday March 1, 2008.

Coroner Richard Taylor said he could not be certain that Kayley had meant to kill herself and recorded a narrative verdict. Mr Taylor said: “Two words keep coming back to me, confusion and impulsivity with no consideration of the consequences.

“Kayley was a normal girl until she suffered at 14 what has been described in the evidence as a catastrophic episode, which was the sexual abuse."

Speaking after the inquest Kayley’s mum Janet Mitchell said: “I dreaded him coming back with a verdict of suicide because I firmly believe that this was just a cry for help.”

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