A 13-YEAR-OLD boy hanged himself at the bottom of his grandmother’s garden, an inquest heard.

Brandon Barker was found by his great grandfather in a remote area outside the house in Mersea Road, Langenhoe.

An inquest heard a knife was found near his body inside a car port about 300 yards from the main home at the bottom of the garden.

Detective Inspector Greg Wood, who led the investigation, said: “Where he was found, he wouldn’t have been visible unless someone went to go and find him.

“Brandon was found in a remote area of the address concealed.

“The rope we think he used was cut off from some other rope and there was a knife we think he used to cut it.”

Det Insp Wood said no other marks were found on the teenager’s body.

Likewise there were no suggestions of previous harm or suspicious circumstances.

Police also examined Brandon’s phone, which did not uncover a suicide note or give any indication as to why he took his life.

During the hearing, Brandon’s dad Carl, who appeared in court with his parents and sister, interjected and said: “There’s nothing anywhere. I’ve looked everywhere.”

Brandon, of Berkley Close, Highwoods, Colchester, was last seen at 9.40am on August 11.

Coroner’s officer Alan Clements said: “Brandon was with his grandmother.

“She thought he had gone out but at about 1.40pm his great-grandfather found him at the bottom of the garden.

“The police and paramedics were called and they followed advanced life support protocols before pronouncing him dead.”

He confirmed the cause of death as hanging and pneumonia, but the court heard the 13-year-old did not have a cold previously.

Senior coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray said: “A thorough investigation was carried out and the police came to the view there was no foul play, or suspicious circumstances.

“I have come to the sad conclusion Brandon intended to take his own life.

“I have in mind he was a young teenage boy and as such, boys can sometimes be impulsive, but I’m sure he formed the intention and took the deliberate action knowing it would cause his death.

“It is clear he was a much-loved little boy and I’m again going to express condolences and sympathy to you, and hope you will be able to think back to those happy memories of him.”


Picture: free-images.com


THE father of a teenager who took his own life has said he feels let down by the agencies involved in his son’s wellbeing.

St Helena School pupil Brandon Barker was 13 when he was found hanged just more than a week after his birthday.

Dad Carl is angry at the system for not making available the help his son so desperately needed.

He said: “I tried for two-and-a-half years. I tried very hard, day in day out, I was in and out of the school, doctors and social services trying to get help from whatever angle I could. 

“I called the doctors before he took his life and was told he wasn’t eligible for the help.

“He had depression and anxiety, but one of the agencies dropped him.
“I went to the doctors nine months before he died to get a referral which took six months. The Government let him down.”

Tributes left on Facebook described a kind-hearted boy with a sense of humour and warm nature. He had one brother and sister.

Mr Barker plans to pursue legal action against the organisations which he feels are at fault.

He said: “People need to be aware they have to push for the help if they believe there’s something wrong with their child. You shouldn’t have to wait nine months.

“I begged for help and now my son has gone - it’s a life-changing experience. Now me and my children have to suffer.”

  • If you are under 25 and need to talk to someone, click here for the YES Youth Enquiry Service or call 01206 710771.
  • To refer yourself to EWMHS (Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Service) which provides support for young people and their families, click here or call 0300 300 1600.
  • You can also access EWMHS self-help resources through My Mind by clicking here.
  • Mid and North Essex Mind can be accessed here.
  • For a full list of much more organisations which can support you if you are ever feeling suicidal such as Samaritans or Papyrus, click here