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August 14, 2008
A teenager from Chorley threatened to commit suicide and begged doctors for help just days before being found dead at his home, an inquest heard.
Michael Daniel Barker, 19, was found hanged in the garage at his family home in Redwood Drive on April 13, after years of mental health problems.
In the weeks leading up to his death the troubled teenager, who was known as Danny, attempted to commit suicide on a number of occasions, including taking two overdoses of anti-depressant drugs.
At one stage he climbed on top of a motorway bridge and threatened to jump off before pleading with police officers and mental health crisis workers to help him.
But health chiefs said he was not a risk and refused to admit him into the mental health unit at Chorley hospital.
Mum Anne-Marie Kelly told the inquest at Preston that her son ‘desperately’ wanted help, but was let down by the health services. She said: “It is not about blame. It is about making sure no-one else slips through the net. Danny slipped through the net on several occasions.”
She said problems started for her son when his father died when he was eight. Since then the teenager had numerous run-ins with the law and he was under a police curfew at the time of his death.
Assistant deputy coroner Howard McCann questioned whether Barker’s actions were to illicit sympathy and said he was not satisfied the teenager was fully aware of his actions due to traces of ecstasy and cocaine in his system. He recorded an open verdict. adding ‘he was clearly a troubled young man’.