Young Chesterfield woman died by suicide, coroner rules

Georgina Stevens' inquest was held at Chesterfield coroners' court.
Georgina Stevens' inquest was held at Chesterfield coroners' court.

A concerned coroner has said he will write to Derbyshire Constabulary about the way the force records information - after a young woman took her own life in Chesterfield.

Police found Georgina Stevens hanged in her home on Sandforth Street on the evening of July 9 last year.

The 35-year-old graphic designer had a history of mental health issues.

A Chesterfield coroners' court inquest heard Ian Ellis alerted police on the afternoon of July 8 after becoming concerned for the welfare of his friend Ms Stevens.

Officers made efforts to locate her and check on her wellbeing.

On the evening of July 8, Ms Stevens' mother Margaret - who did not know about Mr Ellis's earlier contact with police - telephoned Derbyshire Constabulary to report concerns that she had not heard from her daughter.

Stacey Clarke, who worked in the force's control room taking 101 calls, said she did not refer Margaret Stevens' concerns to officers as she felt there were no immediate issues which required a police response.

The court heard that a Derbyshire Constabulary computer system did not 'pick up' Mr Ellis's report when Margaret Stevens contacted police.

However, coroner Peter Nieto concluded that even if the two incidents had been linked 'it is unlikely it would have made a difference in Georgina's case’ as officers were already responding to the concerns raised by Mr Ellis.

Mr Nieto added there was evidence that Ms Stevens was seen at her house on the morning of July 9 so an immediate police response after Margaret Stevens' call on the evening of July 8 would have found her daughter to be alive.

But he said: "Clearly it's a concern the two referrals weren't tied up.

"I don't see it made a difference in Georgina's case but clearly in other cases it's very important that referrals of concern are tied together in terms of police enquiries.

"I'll write to the police on that issue - I'll suggest they need to check how information is recorded."

Mr Nieto concluded that Ms Stevens - who was described as 'very strong-minded and independent' by her mother - died by suicide.

Whoever you are, however you feel, whatever life has done to you, please remember that you are not alone and help is at hand. You can call the Samaritans for free on 116 123 or email them jo@Samaritans.org. The Samaritans are there all day, every day.