Suicide after jealous rage

A karting enthusiast from Clevedon, who battled for years with depression and alcohol abuse, hanged himself after a row with his girlfriend at a party, an inquest heard.

Nicholas Morley stormed out of the party in Weston in October last year, in a drunken and jealous rage, after seeing his girlfriend Philippa Smith talking to a man in the kitchen.

On March 15, Miss Smith told Flax Bourton Coroners Court that she asked Mr Morley’s best friend, Philip Gosling, to find him, but later discovered Mr Morley had made his way back to his flat in Beaconsfield Road.

She said the unemployed 31-year-old telephoned her while she was at Mr Gosling’s home, in the early hours of October 30, ‘shouting and screaming’ at her and told her ‘you will never see me again’.

Mr Gosling told the court Mr Morley, who was described as a ‘loving, kind, considerate and family-orientated person’, also threatened to hang himself during heated telephone conversations.


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Mr Gosling drove to Mr Morley’s flat at 2am but found him hanging in the living room.

Nailsea police officer Carrie Townsend said in a statement to the court that ‘green vegetable matter, white powder and a piece of card’ was found on a sofa nearby.

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Mr Gosling told the court he untied his friend and tried to resuscitate him but Mr Morley was pronounced dead on arrival at Weston General Hospital.

A statement from Mr Morley’s doctor’s surgery, Riverside Group, said he had been taking medication and receiving counselling for anxiety, depression and binge drinking since 2006, but had not visited since April last year.

Family members said Mr Morley, who owned five karts and was due to receive a prestigious trophy for the sport, had many friends and also loved travelling.

They said he had never expressed suicidal tendencies.

A statement from his sister Lisa said his ashes would be scattered at Senna Corner, in Italy, as he always wanted to visit where his hero, Ayrton Senna, died.

On delivering a verdict of suicide, deputy assistant coroner Terry Moore said: “The pathologist has said he was moderately intoxicated and had taken a recreational dose of cocaine, which does have an influence and prevents normal reactions and inhibitions.”

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