Shop keeper found hanged


A MATLOCK newsagent troubled by depression hanged himself in the cellar below his shop.

Shocked Matthew Carter found the body of his father David suspended by a rope fixed to a scaffolding prop in a basement workshop, an inquest heard.

He sawed through the rope to cut him down and then tried in vain to revive him before paramedics and police arrived.

Chesterfield Coroner's court heard that the 59-year-old widower had suffered bouts of depression going back to 1993.

He was a "perfectionist" in his former work as a joiner but his recession-hit business collapsed in 1995, said his son.

Mr Carter then took over the newsagents shop in Smedley Street East, Matlock, and lived above the premises. He and his wife had planned to sell the business but he was rocked by her sudden death in 2007.

Mr Carter junior stated that his father became "hyper" and began to behave oddly, and was referred to a mental health crisis team by his GP.

He said he took his medication meticulously but was also drinking "too much, too often."

on August 20 last year Matthew Carter returned from dogwalking at about 9am when he found his father hanging.

Post-mortem result found traces of prescribed drugs at normal levels and no alcohol. Pathologist Dr Sheik Saleh gave the cause of death as asphyxiation from hanging.

The Chesterfield inquest heard there wasn't a suicide note.

Deputy North Derbyshire Coroner Nigel Anderson recorded an open verdict. He said it seeemed likely that Mr Carter had intended to kill himself but, without a note, there was insufficient evidence in law to record a suicide verdict.