Headline USA

‘Twitter killer’ who butchered nine ‘suicidal’ people wants to get married

Japanese ‘Twitter killer’ who butchered nine ‘suicidal’ people he met online is sentenced to death but asks for his execution to be delayed so he can get married to an ‘an ordinary girl’

  • Takahiro Shiraishi has been sentenced to death for murdering nine people 
  • He arranged to meet the suicidal people on Twitter according to court reports
  • Shiraishi said he will not appeal the death sentence but wants to get married
  • She said he wants to meet ‘an ordinary girl’ before his date with the executioner 

A Japanese man dubbed the ‘Twitter killer’ who was sentenced to death for the murders of nine people has reportedly said he will forgo an appeal against the verdict but wants to get married before his demise.

On Tuesday a Tokyo court handed down the death penalty to Takahiro Shiraishi for killing and dismembering nine victims he met on the social media platform.

Shiraishi targeted internet users who had posted comments about taking their own lives, telling them he could help them with their plans – and even die alongside them.

On Tuesday a Tokyo court handed down the death penalty to Takahiro Shiraishi for killing and dismembering nine victims he met on Twitter

While the 30-year-old has admitted killing and butchering his young victims - all but one of whom were women - his lawyers have begun procedures to appeal to a higher court

While the 30-year-old has admitted killing and butchering his young victims – all but one of whom were women – his lawyers have begun procedures to appeal to a higher court

While the 30-year-old has admitted killing and butchering his young victims – all but one of whom were women – his lawyers have begun procedures to appeal to a higher court.

But Shiraishi, who has been detained since his arrest three years ago, told the Mainichi Shimbun that he plans to drop further legal action.

He said he had not been nervous about the verdict because ‘it was obvious’.

While voicing his readiness to accept the punishment, he expressed a wish to get married.

‘Now, I want to meet an ordinary girl,’ Shiraishi said.

‘I want to get married. I want to find a marriage partner while I am in jail.’

His lawyers have argued he should receive a prison sentence rather than be executed because his victims, aged between 15 and 26, had expressed suicidal thoughts on social media and so had consented to die.

But a judge dismissed that argument and handed down the death penalty for the 2017 crimes, saying the case had ‘provoked great anxiety in society, because social networks are so commonly used’.

His lawyers have argued he should receive a prison sentence rather than be executed because his victims, aged between 15 and 26, had expressed suicidal thoughts on social media and so had consented to die

His lawyers have argued he should receive a prison sentence rather than be executed because his victims, aged between 15 and 26, had expressed suicidal thoughts on social media and so had consented to die

Headline USA New York Politics

Ghislaine Maxwell has been entrusted with monitoring other inmates who may be suicidal

Ghislaine Maxwell has been entrusted with monitoring other inmates who might be suicidal, her lawyers have claimed in newly unsealed court papers.

The suspect child sex trafficker and former girlfriend of Jeffrey Epstein has reportedly been handed the task at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, where she’s being held while she awaits trial.

‘She has been made a suicide watch inmate, which is the highest and most trusted responsibility that an inmate can have,’ attorneys Mark Cohen and Jeffrey Pagliuca wrote in a motion requesting her release to home confinement on a $28.5 million bail package, the NY Post reported.

Maxwell’s lawyers have routinely complained about the ‘onerous’ jail conditions the 58-year-old has been subjected while at the facility, including claims that she herself is being woken up by guards with flashlights every 15 minutes to make sure she hasn’t killed herself.

‘It’s the height of irony that Ms. Maxwell is being constantly surveilled as if she were a suicide risk when she, herself, is trusted enough (if she were ever released from isolation) to monitor inmates who are truly at risk of suicide,’ Cohen and Pagliuca wrote.

Ghislaine Maxwell appears via video link during her arraignment hearing where she was denied bail for her role aiding Jeffrey Epstein to recruit and eventually abuse of minor girls in a July court sketch

Suspect child sex trafficker and former girlfriend of Jeffrey Epstein, Ghislaine Maxwell, has reportedly been handed the task at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, where she’s being held while she awaits trial

The Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn is seen above. Maxwell's lawyer have routinely complained about the 'onerous' conditions she's being confined in

The Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn is seen above. Maxwell’s lawyer have routinely complained about the ‘onerous’ conditions she’s being confined in

Maxwell’s defense team has accused the detention center of subjecting their client to unreasonable restrictions and conditions over concerns she’ll meet the same ends as Epstein, who was found dead in his cell at Manhattan’s Metropolitan Correctional Center in August last year.

Citing her terms of confinement to be ‘unbearable’, Maxwell’s attorneys are arguing that such purported harsh conditions favor her bid for release.

The claims were included as part of bail arguments filed under seal in Manhattan federal court last Tuesday before being publicly released with redactions on Monday.

In the filing, the lawyers said Maxwell and her husband, Scott Borgerson, with whom she has been living for the past four years, were offering a $22.5million personal recognizance bond secured by about $8million in property and $500,000 in cash, to secure her temporary release.

The terms of the release would involve the couple hiring armed guards to protect her 24/7 in her New York City residence before trial. Her lawyers also said she would have electronic monitoring.

They said $22.5million represents all of Maxwell and Borgerson’s assets – which were broken down in a chart included in the court papers requesting the staggering bail package that dwarfs other high profile criminals such as Harvey Weinstein.

Borgerson – a 44-year-old tech CEO whose name was redacted in the papers – pleaded for his wife’s release in a letter to the court, writing: ‘The person described in the criminal charges is not the person we know.

‘I have never witnessed anything inappropriate with Ghislaine; quite the contrary, the Ghislaine I know is a wonderful and loving person.’

Maxwell's husband Scott Borgerson plead to the judge for her temporary release in a letter shared as part of the filing

Maxwell’s husband Scott Borgerson plead to the judge for her temporary release in a letter shared as part of the filing

Maxwell is scheduled to face a July trial on charges that she recruited three teenage girls for Epstein to abuse in the mid-1990s. She has pleaded not guilty

Maxwell is scheduled to face a July trial on charges that she recruited three teenage girls for Epstein to abuse in the mid-1990s. She has pleaded not guilty

A redacted version of Borgerson's letter is shown above

A redacted version of Borgerson’s letter is shown above 

‘The reporting of Ghislaine over the past year has exploded exponentially. From the time of Epstein’s arrest and death in custody in the summer of 2019 until Ghislaine’s own arrest in July of this year,’ Borgerson, a wealthy former chief executive of shipping data company CargoMetrics, added.

He also described the coverage as ‘frighteningly intense’. 

The letter from Borgerson (pictured) tells how Maxwell was forced to leave her family and drop out of public view, not because she was eluding law enforcement, but because of 'the intense media frenzy and threats following the arrest and death of Jeffrey Epstein'

The letter from Borgerson (pictured) tells how Maxwell was forced to leave her family and drop out of public view, not because she was eluding law enforcement, but because of ‘the intense media frenzy and threats following the arrest and death of Jeffrey Epstein’

‘There are many examples of violence whose seeds were born in conspiracy theories and the experiences of QAnon, Pizzagate, and the recent Judge Salas attacks are terrifying.’ 

Last week a representative for Maxwell, Brian Basham, told that her lawyers wanted to leave Borgerson’s name out of the bail arguments to avoid more attention – even though his identity was widely exposed after her arrest in July. was the first to report that Borgerson and Maxwell were an item almost a year earlier – after Epstein was arrested last August. 

Borgerson, who is 14 years Maxwell’s junior, left his wife in 2014 and tried to reconcile before finally divorcing her in December 2015. 

The court papers confirmed that Borgerson and Maxwell got married in 2016 – marking the first time that they’ve publicly acknowledged the union.  

The identities of seven other close friends and family members who the lawyers said were willing to pledge about $5million of their own assets toward the bail package were also not revealed.  

‘Everybody associated with this is suffering from the lynch mob mentality. They are worried, even frightened,’ Basham said. 

The lawyers also included letters from several friends of Maxwell’s in the filing, including one who wrote: ‘I observed her grow up and become a lovely, witty, resourceful, scrupulous and trustworthy human being. 

‘Additionally, a ferocious work ethic and Ghislaine was no exception in deeply absorbing, exhibiting and living these values and training.

‘As far as allowing my own young children and or their friends to visit, both before and at any time in the future, the answer is an unequivocal YES.

‘I wish further and most critically as it obtains to this bail hearing, to attest to the loving relationship she has with her husband which I have personally witnessed on many different occasions.’ 

Another friend described knowing Maxwell since their teenage years, writing: ‘My parents trusted Ghislaine with me when I was aged 12, 15, and 19, all key points during my adolescence. 

‘Because of her I have known more of the world and have my imagination ignited and expanded in ways I could not have imagined.’

first attempt at bail shortly after her July arrest was rejected.

he president said he 'wished her well' in an interview with Axios earlier this year

Maxwell’s (pictured with Trump right in 1997) first attempt at bail shortly after her July arrest was rejected. The president said he ‘wished her well’ in an interview with Axios earlier this year

The lawyers said Maxwell and her husband, with whom she has been living for the past four years, were offering a $22.5million personal recognizance bond secured by about $8million in property and $500,000 in cash. They said $22.5million represents all of Maxwell and her spouse's assets - which were detailed in a chart (pictured) included in the court papers

The lawyers said Maxwell and her husband, with whom she has been living for the past four years, were offering a $22.5million personal recognizance bond secured by about $8million in property and $500,000 in cash. They said $22.5million represents all of Maxwell and her spouse’s assets – which were detailed in a chart (pictured) included in the court papers

Two others described themselves as longtime friends of the entire Maxwell family, likening Ghislaine to her late father Robert Maxwell.  

‘She has her father’s charisma and has a genuine warmth,’ one wrote. ‘I would describe her as a woman of principle, very disciplined with an extraordinary work ethic, instilled by both her parents.’

Robert Maxwell is known as one of Britain’s most powerful media magnates and most notorious fraudsters who spent his business career investing in Israel’s economy after losing most of his family during the Holocaust and moving to the UK to build a publishing empire. 

He died aged 68 in suspicious circumstances after falling off his megayacht in 1991. After his death, he was revealed to have stolen £500million ($623 million) from employee pension funds. 

The second friend who said they knew the Maxwell family ‘for most of my life’ described Ghislaine as ‘mature’, ‘sensitive’ and ‘quite obviously grounded in good human values’. 

‘She does not lie,’ the friend wrote. ‘She is no “chicken” – it would be totally unlike her to run away from the charges leveled against her. 

‘In fact the idea of not “facing the music” is totally against the values of every single Maxwell, because both their parents always emphasized personal responsibility – specifically to face Bob’s temper. These people consider running away their greatest shame.’  

Maxwell is scheduled to face a July trial on charges that she recruited three teenage girls for Epstein to abuse in the mid-1990s. She has pleaded not guilty.

Her first attempt at bail shortly after her July arrest was rejected.

‘Ms Maxwell vehemently maintains her innocence and is committed to defending herself,’ the lawyers wrote. 

‘She wants nothing more than to remain in this country to fight the allegations against her, which are based on the uncorroborated testimony of a handful of witnesses about events that took place over 25 years ago.’ 

Read the bail proposal below: 

Entertainment UK

Rebekah Vardy ‘felt suicidal’ after troll’s jibe about putting baby in microwave

Rebekah Vardy has claimed she felt “suicidal” and suffered “panic attacks and anxiety” after allegedly being being bombarded with sick messages from trolls after the Coleen Rooney Wagatha Christie row.

Wayne Rooney’s wife, 34, accused Rebekah’s account of leaking stories from her private Instagram page to the press – a claim Rebekah has vehemently denied.

She’s now suing Coleen for libel in a bid to clear her name and it’s gone to London’s High Court today for a preliminary hearing.

In a statement presented to court today, Rebekah opened up about the alleged abuse she suffered online.

She listed a number of vicious messages she allegedly received from trolls, including one which declared: “I you’re your baby gets put in a microwave”.

The message, which was sent to Rebekah’s Instagram account, read: “Yo snitch I you’re your baby gets put in a microwave and ur husband shags some other bird other than snake valley.”

Rebekah Vardy, pictured, admitted she felt ‘suicidal’ after a barrage of sick messages from trolls

Another message presented to court in the statement read: “You fat ugly f*****g rat I genuinely hope you and your baby rot and die an extremely painful death for what you have done.”

Rebeka’s statement alleged she “suffered extreme distress, hurt, anxiety and embarrassment as a result of the publication of the Post and the events which followed.”

The WAG – who was pregnant at the time of the row – went on: “The abuse that followed the Post made the Claimant feel suicidal.

“She suffered from severe panic attacks and anxiety which manifested in being scared to leave her house…

Coleen Rooney, pictured, is locked in a libel battle with Rebekah

“The Claimant also suffered from severe insomnia. She was taken to hospital three times while pregnant as she suffered anxiety attacks as a result of the Post and the repercussions from it.

“The Claimant’s stress was such that she had concerns about losing her baby or going into early labour.”

Last year, Coleen sensationally accused Rebekah’s account of being behind stories that were leaked from her private account – earning her the nickname Wagatha Christie for her online sleuthing.

She set up her own sting operation to catch whoever had been passing on information from her private page to the press.

She posted a series of fake stories, blocked all her followers apart from Rebekah’s account and then sprung a gotcha post online when the hoax posts made their way into the papers.

Rebekah, pictured, has always denied selling stories on her former friend

Rebekah vehemently denied she was behind the leaks, insisting a number of people had access to her Instagram page.

After Coleen’s post in October 2019, Rebekah released a statement to strenuously deny she was behind the leak.

Rebekah wrote: “I wish you had called me if you thought this.

“I never speak to anyone about you as various journalists who have asked me to over the years can vouch for.

“I’m not being funny but I don’t need the money, what would I gain from selling stories on you?…

“I liked you a lot Coleen & I’m so upset that you have chosen to do this.”

In the court documents, Rebekah continues to deny being behind the leak and accused Coleen of exposing her to “public ridicule”.

Coleen, pictured, accused Rebekah’s account of leaking stories

The statement added: “The publication by the Defendant of the words complained of and entirely foreseeable republications and repetitions of them have gravely injured the reputation of the Claimant and have exposed her to public ridicule and contempt and have caused her enormous distress and very extreme embarrassment.

“All of these effects continue to date.”

As part of the suit, Rebekah is claiming damages, including aggravated damages, for libel and an injunction preventing Coleen “her employees, her agents or otherwise howsoever, from publishing or causing to be published the same or similar words defamatory of the Claimant.”

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Suicidal insufficiencies

This week, a Léger poll conducted for the Pacte pour la transition revealed that 68% of Quebecers consider that the actions of governments are insufficient in response to the climate emergency.

And for good reason !

The planet is burning and we spray it with gas and oil! These fossil fuels will soon pass through beautiful brand new pipelines, funded with our money.

However, this is not what the people want. She is much more aware of environmental issues than two years ago. You can read it in this poll, as it does in the pages of this journal over time.

From words to deeds

Two years ago, at the initiative of Dominic Champagne, we strongly launched the Pacte pour la transition. This initiative ends today as scheduled.

Never in the history of the environmental movement in Quebec have so many citizens formally committed to changing their behavior and putting pressure on governments.

There have been actions taken in thousands of homes, schools, businesses and other organizations. Several elected officials have also changed their speeches … but not enough their decisions!

However, they should do so knowing that 81% of Quebecers consider that the fight against climate change must be a priority for governments in their post-pandemic economic recovery plan. This is what the same poll reveals.

While COVID is a priority right now, we know that to prevent other pandemics like this one, we must respect planetary limits. This is also what is needed to prevent climate change.

Governments have a duty to protect the health and safety of their people. That’s why they need to do so much more for the environment.

The time has come to take actions that are consistent with the world we want to bequeath to our children and to all those who will follow. The solutions are there. What are we waiting for to implement them?

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Entertainment UK

Bitter off-screen Gogglebox feud left star feeling suicidal and ‘forced’ off air

Chris Ashby-Steed was hiding a dark secret when he confirmed his exit from Gogglebox back in February 2018.

Viewers were stunned when Chris was vanished from screens and was replaced by co-star Stephen Webb’s mum.

The hairdressing duo had viewers in stitches every week with their sarcastic one-liners and hilarious gags, with Chris responsible for one of the most hysterical moments in Gogglebox history.

“We all like a bad boy though, don’t we,” admitted Chris as he sat watching the TV.

As they were watching a hard-hitting programme, baffled Stephen replied: “Yeah, not a f***ing terrorist though Chris. There’s a bad boy and then there’s evil.”

Chris and Stephen, who previously dated before the show but remained close friends, seemed as close as ever on air during 10 series togetjer.

However, behind-the-scenes the pair were secretly locked in a bitter feud that destroyed their friendship forever.

Stephen Webb and Chris Steed were original Gogglebox stars

Their relationship was soon in tatters after a series of off-screen rows that viewers had no idea about.

Last year, Chris confessed leaving the show after feuding with his sidekick left him feeling suicidal.

“There have been times where I’ve felt so low that I think, ‘How can I kill myself?’,” he told the Sunday Mirror in March 2019.

Chris vanished from screens after a planned TV project involving the pair fell through – and has since suffered from depression.

He claimed the duo had planned to take some time away from Gogglebox to take part in a new venture and blamed Stephen for it never getting off the ground.

“Originally Stephen and I decided we were going to break away from Gogglebox together,” explained Chris.

“We had a production company that was interested in taking us on. They wanted to get us out there as a brand.

“But Stephen decided to copy me in to an email to the studio saying he was going to terminate our joint venture. After he sent that email I didn’t speak to him for a little while because I was hurt by it.”

Chris claimed he was going to take a break from Gogglebox with Stephen

According to Chris, Gogglebox bosses then offered them their place on the show back – but Stephen did not want to work together again.

“Then the studio called and said they would like to offer us the position back on Gogglebox,” claimed Chris.

“I spoke to Stephen and his attitude was ‘I’m not sure I can put up with you every other week filming’. Which was a bit of a blow.

“I turned around to him and said, ‘I get the impression that I think a lot more of you than you do of me’. His reply was, ‘Yeah, you’re probably right.’”

Chris claimed Gogglebox producers agreed the popular pair could appear with new partners on alternate weeks, but this didn’t come to fruition.

“I asked if it was OK for me to film with someone else and they said fine. I suggested someone and they said it wasn’t going to work,” said Chris.

Stephen Webb and Chris Steed on Gogglebox
Stephen and Chris has a falling out

Chris struggled with his mental health after announcing his departure in February last year – and feared having to explain to people why he was no longer on the show.

“I’ve felt like a failure, I’ve been depressed, I struggle in social situations, I’m agoraphobic,” he added. “I’m worried about people coming up to me and asking why I left the show.

“I felt I couldn’t tell the truth. I avoid going out now. I’ve been seeing a counsellor every week.”

Taking to social media after the interview was published, Chris stated that he’d finally had the courage to stand up and explain how he was “forced off” Gogglebox.

When Chris made the claims last year, a Gogglebox spokesperson told the Mirror: “Chris has not contacted us since he made the decision to leave the show.

“The duty of care of the Gogglebox contributors is of paramount importance.”

While Stephen declined to comment at the time.

While all this happened off-screen, Chris’ departure seemed smooth in public.

Chris Ashby-Steed spoke out about reality TV aftercare

After ten series of Gogglebox, the original cast member confirmed he was leaving in February 2018.

A C4 spokeswoman said: “Chris has decided to pursue other opportunities but we want to thank him for his fantastic contributions across ten series.”

Not mentioning the alleged row, Chris said he was saying goodbye and taking the plunge to explore new career opportunities.

“After 10 series, a wedding, and a helluva lot of takeaways, our lovely dogs and I have decided it’s time to say a very fond farewell to our Gogglebox family,” his statement read.

“I’ve loved every minute of being on the show and will never forget all the amazing things it’s allowed me to do. Since my wedding, it’s felt like there should be a new start, so I’m taking the plunge to see what’s out there!

“I’m really looking forward to what the future holds, especially pursuing a career in TV, as I hope to show viewers that I have many more talents. So, watch this space!”

Chris was joined by his mum Pat on the sofa in 2018

He even added: “I wish Stephen and Mummy Pat all the very best on the show, and I look forward to watching them every week.”

Stephen initially brought in mum Pat to join him on the sofa – with show bosses reportedly keen to get some older cast members in after the tragic death of popular Leon Bernicoff.

Audiences grew to love Pat, who appeared on the show for two series.

Stephen’s husband Daniel Lustig-Webb then took over in 2019 and has become a regular fixture.

Sadly Chris has not returned to our screens, but lives happily with husband Tony.

Stephen now appears with husband Daniel

The pair tied the knot back in 2017 – and explained it was the best day of their lives.

“It was amazing. Do you know what? You know how when you talk to married couples about their wedding day and they say it was the best day of their lives? Up until that point I didn’t believe that it could be possible,” said Chris during an interview with HELLO!.

“It was the most amazing day of my life and I know it was of Tony’s life as well.”

While Chris may no longer be on Gogglebox, he is certainly enjoying a happy life with Tony away from the cameras.

Discussing Chris’ suicidal thoughts last year, husband Tony said: “Chris has confided in me about ending his life. It is awful. I love my husband, this last year he’s been a shadow of himself and I want him back.”

*Gogglebox airs tonight on Channel 4 at 9pm

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Entertainment UK

Justin Bieber says he felt ‘really, really suicidal’ as he urges fans to talk

Justin Bieber said he used to feel “really, really suicidal” as he opened up about his mental health battle.

The star urged any of his fans struggling to talk as he discussed the matter in a new YouTube documentary.

Justin Bieber : Next Chapter sees the Baby singer talk about his darkest moments.

Last September he shared a lengthy Instagram post revealing that childhood stardom had left him with suicidal thoughts.

He has now spoken again and the open star said he was living on the edge.

Candid Justin has feared he would ‘suffer forever’

“There was times where I was really, really suicidal,” he said.

“Like, man, is this pain ever going to go away? It was so consistent, the pain was so consistent.

“I was just suffering, right? So, I’m just like, man, I would rather not feel this than feel this.”

He added there was plenty to gain from discussing mental health issues.

He has opened up about his darkest moments

The star said: “I just would encourage people, like, ‘Hey, if you’re feeling lonely, talk about it. Say it out loud.’ There’s a freedom in that. I could have avoided a lot of pain.”

Justin said last year: “It’s cool to have a healthy mind and healthy emotions.”

“I pray and meditate, things like that. I write music, listen to music. Music is very powerful; it can really help you when you’re feeling low.”

Hailey helped Justin get his life back on track

He claimed he had “made every bad decision” by the time he was 20, after fame had “gone to his head.”

Justin wrote: “It’s taken me years to bounce back from all these terrible decisions, fix broken relationships, and change relationship habits. Luckily god blessed me with extraordinary people who love me for me.”

If you’re struggling and need to talk, the Samaritans operates a free helpline open 24/7 on 116 123. Alternatively, you can email [email protected] if you’d prefer to write down how you feel. You are not alone.

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Suicidal man injured in his cell: the BEI launches an investigation

The Independent Investigations Bureau (BEI) intends to shed light on an event that occurred on Saturday in a police station in Quebec, where a suicidal man allegedly inflicted serious injuries on himself in his cell.

The Quebec City Police Service (SPVQ) says it was called to intervene on Saturday morning, around 10:20 am, with a young woman who allegedly made suicidal comments. When the police arrived at the scene, they found him in distress and in the company of a man.

While the woman was receiving the necessary treatment, officers reportedly began questioning the man. They realized that the latter was wanted under two warrants.

Also according to the BEI press release, which quotes the SPVQ version, the police officers arrested him. Subsequently, he in turn made suicidal comments on his way to the police station.

He was then placed in cell “with the necessary precautions”, according to what the SPVQ told the BEI.

However, after a routine check at around 1:05 p.m., the police reportedly discovered the lifeless man in his cell.

He eventually regained consciousness during transport to hospital and is currently “out of danger,” the statement from the Bureau of Independent Investigations read.

Seven BEI investigators have been assigned to the case, and they will be assisted by the Sûreté du Québec.

Anyone who believes they have information about this event should contact the BEI through its website.

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Headlines UK

Psychologist, 42, who specialised in helping suicidal people hanged herself

A consultant psychologist who specialised in helping people who were at risk of suicide killed herself after her husband told her he wanted to a divorce. 

Dr Pamela Reeves, from Wokingham, Berkshire, had specialised in helping people who were struggling with mental health issues which made them likely to harm themselves, an inquest into her death heard today.

However, the 42-year-old doctor hanged herself after her husband Matthew Reeves, a police superintendent, told her their relationship might be over and left the marital home on July 26, the coroner was told.

The following morning, at a meeting with Dr Reeves’ colleagues from a specialist mental health team, known as the PICT, based in Reading, some of her close friends became concerned that Dr Reeves, known as ‘Pam’, was missing.

Another clinical psychologist, Dr Anna Norris told the inquest how she had volunteered to go to Dr Reeves’ home to check on her colleague. 

In a statement to the hearing in Reading, which she also attended in person, Dr Norris said: ‘Pam’s mum was supposed to be moving in and the plan was to build an annexe. 

Dr Pamela Reeves, 42, from Wokingham, Berkshire, who worked for a specialist mental health team hanged herself after her husband told her he wanted a divorce, Reading Coroner’s Office heard. Pictured: Reading Coroner’s Office inside the Town Hall

‘Eventually Matt had told Pam that he did not want her mum moving in. Pam told her mum this and she was unhappy. Her mother had not been talking to her because of this.’   

A court heard one of the other members on the team had told Dr Norris: ‘I hope she does not kill me for sharing this but Matt told her he wanted a divorce yesterday afternoon. 

‘She was very calm and rational by the time I spoke to her. She said she would take a Nytol and go to sleep but I have not heard since. I am seriously worried.’   

Dr Norris said she found the kitchen door to Dr Reeves’ home open and discovered piles of rope in the kitchen along with paperwork on the arm of a chair. 

The inquest heard that Dr Norris managed to enter the bedroom via a bedroom window and found Dr Reeves hanged.

Ambulance crews attended and declared Dr Reeves dead at the scene as police cordoned off the area and carried out a crime scene investigation, seizing two mobile phones.

Superintendent Matthew Reeves said in a statement to the coroner how he discovered, on the day after his wife’s body was found, that she had been searching the internet for methods of suicide.

Mr Reeves’, who attended the inquest, said in his statement: ‘From our conversations in the past, Pam did not think people should be ashamed of suicide. We would often talk about it due to my work in the police.

‘She worked closely with clinicians who provided training to patients who were at a high risk of suicide.’

The police superintendent told how he and Mrs Reeves, originally from South Africa, had met during a night out when she was working for Hampshire Constabulary as an analyst.

They had married six months later in 2003 and started planning to build their ‘forever home’, until disagreements about the plans started to rear up, Mr Reeves said.

He said: ‘In January this year we were due to sign a builder’s plan. I decided I was not happy with the plan, I was not happy with her mum coming and living with us, for us including a retirement flat for her mum.

‘Pam also looked at the financial side of her mum moving over from South Africa. It soon became apparent that Pam would need to help her mum out financially.

‘Pam was not too happy about this, for the last five months there had been a rift between them. 

‘We looked at trying to get a mediator in South Africa to get them talking properly again. When I spoke to her mum in the days after, she mentioned that Pam had told her that I wanted to divorce.’

The couple had put their house on the market and looked to move, with Mrs Reeves described as ‘really happy’ about a new house she had seen but Mr Reeves decided to reveal his feelings about the relationship. 

He said: ‘I felt I needed to say something. I could not go on to the next chapter. On July 26 I said to Pam I thought we needed to go our separate ways.

‘We had woken up and had a lazy morning. Late in the afternoon, around 3.30pm, we were sat on the three-seater sofa. The conversation was very calm, I had always struggled to talk about my emotions but I knew I needed to now. I had said I wanted to leave and Pam said it was unfair.

‘I knew I needed to leave the house to think about everything and if I stayed, I would not be able to think properly.’ 

The couple had agreed to consider relationship counselling but Mr Reeves had left to stay with his mother, packing a bag of his work uniform and some other belongings, the inquest heard.

After telling each other they loved one another, Mr Reeves left and the next time he contacted his wife was through a Whatsapp message which was not read, the coroner was told.

Katy Thorne QC, the assistant coroner for Berkshire, said a toxicologyl examination showed Mrs Reeves had consumed a small amount of alcohol and some Niytol, with a post-mortem examination giving a cause of death as asphyxia due to hanging.

Concluding the inquest, Ms Thorne said: ‘Mrs Reeves lived with her husband in Wokingham. She had had some recent personal problems regarding her relationship with her mother and her husband.

‘On the evening of Sunday, July 26, Mr Reeves left the marital home for a trial separation. Mrs Reeves was last spoken to that night by a friend and the following day did not attend a work meeting.

‘I am satisfied that she took her own life. I am satisfied she intended to do so, having significant personal problems and having searched on the internet for methods of suicide and probably knowing that nobody would come to the house for some time.’  

For confidential support call the Samaritans on 116123 or visit a local Samaritans branch, see for details. 

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One in ten people suffered suicidal thoughts during Britain’s lockdown

One in ten people had suicidal thoughts by the end of the first six weeks of Britain’s lockdown, research has found.

University of Glasgow academics found the pandemic and being confined to home had a major impact on the mental health of people across the UK.

The researchers surveyed 3,000 adults and found that the number of people having thoughts about taking their own life rose by two percentage points between March and May.

Although it is a small rise, it is significant given the short amount of time it occurred over, the researchers said. 

Young people, women and individuals from socially disadvantaged backgrounds were more likely to report worsened mental health during the lockdown. 

One in seven (14 per cent) of young adults had suicidal thoughts in mid-May, the study revealed.

One in ten people had suicidal thoughts by the end of the first six weeks of Britain’s lockdown, research has found. Rates were even higher in those under 30 (stock photo)

The study, which is published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, was funded by mental health charities the Samaritans, the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH), and the Mindstep Foundation. 

Three waves of participants between March and May were asked about pre-existing mental health problems, suicide attempts and self-harm, suicidal thoughts, depression, anxiety, feelings of defeat, feelings of entrapment, mental wellbeing and loneliness. 


Around one in 10 incidents attended by the London Ambulance Service (LAS) during the coronavirus pandemic involved mental health, figures show.

Of a total of 826,396 incidents attended between January and September, 81,644 (10%) had a mental health element.

Mental health incidents have increased each month since March, when the Covid-19 lockdown measures were introduced.

June saw the highest proportion of attended call-outs involving mental  health, making up 12 per cent of the total, or one in eight calls.

Last year, LAS staff and volunteers attended more than 105,000 incidents where patients were experiencing mental ill-health – roughly nine per cent of the total attended.

The LAS’s ‘mental health joint response car”’scheme involves six teams of a registered mental health nurse and paramedic being sent to patients in a mental health crisis.

The extended pilot saw an 80 per cent reduction in unnecessary trips to emergency departments in favour of more appropriate mental health care or referrals between January 19 and April 12.

LAS crews operating outside of the scheme discharged 41 per cent of patients at the scene with care or a more suitable referral, the LAS evaluation found.

Mental health nurses also work in LAS control rooms, offering advice on symptoms and helping decide whether a mental health car needs to be dispatched.

The rising number of mental health incidents is examined in the BBC One documentary Ambulance, which will air on Wednesday at 9pm.

In the episode, crews respond to a call about a suicidal patient pulled out of the River Thames by a passer-by, and help calm down a teenager who has been self-harming.

Keith, a paramedic, said: ‘Life can be difficult and overwhelming sometimes – that’s why it’s so important for people to reach out and talk to someone they trust.

‘Sometimes one conversation is all it takes for someone to get the help they need when they are struggling.’

On the March 23, a nationwide lockdown was announced by the UK government with the public instructed to stay at home to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Eight per cent of people in the first wave of the study, between March 31 and April 9, reported suicidal thoughts. 

This raised to 9.8 per cent by the end of May, once the lockdown had kicked in.

The figure was 14 per cent among young adults aged 19 to 29, up from 12.5 per cent.

The researchers said that even though the increases are relatively small, they are significant because of the short period of time they happened over. 

They said it is not possible to make direct comparisons with pre-Covid-19 rates.

But the average rate of suicidal ideation among young adults is higher than the 11 per cent reported by young adults in a British study published two years ago.

Suicidal thoughts in the whole sample are higher than those reported elsewhere, with 2.8 per cent reporting suicide ideation in one national study of adults in 2009. 

The research is considered one of the most detailed to date on mental health in the UK during the pandemic.

Professor Rory O’Connor, Chair in Health Psychology at the university’s Institute of Health and Wellbeing, who led the study, said: ‘While public health measures, such as lockdown, have been necessary to protect the general population, we know the effects of Covid-19 on the population’s mental health and wellbeing are likely to be profound and long-lasting.

‘The findings from our study, showing in particular the increasing rates of suicidal thoughts, especially among young adults, is concerning, and show that we must be vigilant to this at-risk group.’ 

Younger adults were more likely to report suicidal thoughts and higher levels of depressive symptoms than those aged 30-59 years and over 60.

Those aged 30-59 years reported higher rates than those over 60.

People from lower socio-economic backgrounds were more likely to experience suicidal thoughts compared to those in higher socio-economic groups.

And those with pre-existing mental health conditions were found to report suicidal thoughts more than those without.

More than one in four respondents, 26.1 per cent, experienced at least moderate levels of depressive symptoms. 

Despite the increase in suicidal thoughts and depression, other factors related to suicide risk such as symptoms of anxiety decreased across the same period.

Participants have been followed up throughout the pandemic, and further results will be published in the coming months.

Professor O’Connor said: ‘As we move through this pandemic, investigating the trajectory of mental health and wellbeing is crucial to giving us a better understanding of the challenges people face during this difficult time.

‘By having such analysis and information, we can formulate targeted mental health measures and interventions for those most in need as this pandemic continues, as well as being prepared for future.’  

Dr Liz Scowcroft, Samaritans Head of Research and Evaluation, said: ‘The findings from this study are stark and leave us with no doubt that Covid-19 has had a detrimental impact on the nation’s mental health.

‘However, it is important to remember that a rise in suicides is not inevitable. Suicide is preventable and these results demonstrate that it’s more important than ever that effective support is available for those who need it most.

‘As we continue to navigate our way through the pandemic, it is a priority for us to reach those struggling to cope and encourage them to seek help before they reach crisis point.’ 

For confidential support, call the Samaritans on 116123.   

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Entertainment UK

John Leslie was suicidal with ‘a tree and a rope’ after false rape allegation

John Leslie said in court today that sexual assault allegations left him suicidal and in a park ‘with a tree and a rope’.

The former Blue Peter presenter, 55, told a jury at Southwark Crown Court he went from a “carefree” star with a “great life” to a “depressed and suicidal” recluse after he was wrongly outed as the TV presenter who raped Gladiators’ star Ulrika Jonsson.

Leslie told how he was hosting daytime show This Morning live when fellow presenter Matthew Wright named him as Ulrika’s attacker on a rival channel.

He said it was an “Armageddon” moment and the “end of my career”.

Leslie knew he was entirely innocent.

He had dated Ulrika for “several months” when they were rising stars and they’d had a “great time” before splitting “amicably”.

John Leslie at Southwark Crown Court on Wednesday

In her 2002 autobiography she revealed she had been raped by an anonymous TV presenter whom she had only met once – and Wright mistakenly said it was Leslie.

Following the revelation live on television Leslie said he begged Ulrika to at least state publicly that he was not her attacker, but she allegedly said she wouldn’t

Wright later admitted he had made a mistake, given Leslie’s name in error and apologised to him publicly.

The TV host said he had considered suing Wright over his gaffe but was talked out of it by his agent who said taking legal action against a TV company might hamper his chances of resuming his career.

Leslie, whose dad was an ex-soldier, mum a social worker and brother a former policeman, said it started a “witch hunt” which led to him being wrongly portrayed as a “crazed sexual monster”.

Other women came forward with false allegations against him and – though he was never convicted of any crime – he lost his TV career and the house he had built with the proceeds.

Leslie was wrongly outed as the TV presenter who raped Gladiators’ star Ulrika Jonsson (pictured)

“I lost my life,” he told the court as he choked back tears.

“I became reclusive, depressed and suicidal. I lost everything.”

He said he was so worried about the effect his downfall was having on his parents he decided to ‘take my life’.

“I got to the point of a tree and a rope in the park,” he said.

But he changed his mind because he said that would have meant his accusers had won.

Leslie said he began to rebuild his life but grew “paranoid” everything he did would end up in the public eye.

He said he “lost the carefree, happy John” and became “this shadow and shell”.

John Leslie arrives at court with his father (left)

That is why he said a charity fundraiser’s claim he had laughed as he groped her breasts at a celebrity Christmas party without saying a word to her was “ludicrous”.

He said: “The idea I would do that is crazy. To go up to a total stranger I have never met and just do that would be ludicrous.

“I cannot imagine why she has said that happened. It’s just not me. It would never happen.

“My behaviour may have been gregarious and tactile but it was never criminal. It upsets me.

“She has made the allegation and she thinks it happened. This is utterly bizarre out of nowhere.

“I cannot believe this has come to court.

“I was so aware and so cautious and paranoid about where I was going and who I was with.

Leslie said he went from a ‘carefree’ star with a ‘great life’ to a ‘depressed and suicidal’ recluse

“I just cannot believe we are here today.'”

Leslie said he had never met his accuser, did not recognise her and had “no idea” who she was.

At the only Christmas party he could remember attending around the time he said he had spent the night chatting to the late reality TV star Jade Goody who had been seriously ill.

Earlier the alleged victim’s boss told the jury Leslie had sexually assaulted her too.

She told police he was a “tactile person who can be inappropriate”.

The woman, who once worked with the star, said: “If you were at an event and found someone had squeezed your bottom it was more than likely to be John Leslie.”

Asked by Gudrun Young, defending, if Leslie had ever squeezed her bottom she replied: “Yes, on occasions.”

Leslie denies the sexual assault allegation

She said prosecutors had asked her to make a statement about it but she “chose not to” so they could focus on her former employee’s case.

Leslie also denied groping her, said they did not get on and had done what she claimed she would have confronted him because she was “as hard as nails”.

The jury was told Leslie was found not guilty of two indecent assaults on another woman in 2003 after the prosecution offered no evidence in court.

Five years later he was released without charge by police after he was questioned over an alleged rape and indecent assault in 1995.

He has pleaded not guilty to a single allegation of sexual assault in a West End bar in 2008.

The trial continues.

*If you’re struggling and need to talk, the Samaritans operates a free helpline open 24/7 on 116 123. Alternatively, you can email [email protected] if you’d prefer to write down how you feel. You are not alone.

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