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By Ruth Lawson
A landlady who was charged with staging a fake raid at her social club inspired by the crime TV show CSI then took her own life
A landlady charged with staging a fake raid at her social club took her own life during a period of “acute depression”, an inquest heard.
Kim Collins was discovered slumped in the front seat of a car in East Boldon on June 15 with her two Alsatian dogs in the back.
A South Tyneside inquest heard how the troubled 43-year-old left a note in the car stating that she wanted to take the dogs with her and that she didn’t want an autopsy.
She also wrote: “I just want to go in peace, I just want to sleep. Thank you.”
At the inquest, Sgt Philip Young said: “The paramedics walked to the front of the car and had a look at her and checked for any vital signs and it was obvious she was dead.
“The dogs were very sedated – we weren’t sure if they were alive – but once the hatch was open they stood up and walked out.”
The court heard how Kim had been in contact with mental health professionals in March after a failed attempt to take her life some days earlier.
Registered nurse David Pears said: “She was warm and welcoming and was quite open in her feelings.”
He told how Kim told him of some family issues, referring to the fact that her father had recently passed away.
She had earlier been charged with faking a robbery – which was said to be inspired by crime show CSI – at The Big Club in Boldon in June last year.
She admitted wasting police time but, on the day she was due to be sentenced, changed her plea to not guilty. Since November she had been too ill to attend court.
Mr Pears said: “She alluded to trouble in the club where she had been tied up and perhaps a crime committed. I was of the opinion she wasn’t totally honest with this.
“I asked her pretty directly: ‘Do you harbour any thoughts around self harm or suicide?’, to which she replied she did not.”
Pathologist Clive Broxhan said traces of antidepressant prescription drug mirtazapine were found in Kim’s system but said her death was a result of deprivation of oxygen and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Coroner Terence Carney said: “She ended her life during a period of acute depression. I’m in no doubt that this was another episode of that depression she experienced some several months before.”