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Posted: June 21, 2016
A young woman suffocated herself in her car after a difficult battle with depression, an Chelmsford inquest heard.
Jodie Anne Jose, of Great Bentley near Colchester, was discovered in her Ford Fiesta at Great Bentley railway station at around midnight on March 5 after disappearing from her home the day before.
Jodie, 22, had a medical history of depression and she’d been taking anti-depressants for about six months following a self-harm incident in November, where she had set up a dressing gown cord in her bedroom but didn’t attempt anything.
Inspector Paul Butcher of Essex Police attended the scene of her death and spoke at the inquest.
He said: “We were made aware that Jodie was missing at about 10.50pm on March 4. We treated her as missing very early on.
“I contacted her mother and as a result of the information we obtained, I declared her a high-risk missing person which is the highest priority.
Officers conducted an extensive search of the area, concentrating on places they thought she might go.
Inspector Butcher added: “I think Mrs Jose had done a fantastic job, setting up people to search the area by putting things out on Facebook so they had all sorts of friends out searching as well. It was really a good idea.”
At around midnight, Jodie’s car was discovered by her friend Megan Smith and her boyfriend Jake in the car park of Great Bentley railway station.
Inspector Butcher continued: “When I arrived at the scene, Jodie was receiving CPR. I checked the vehicle over and there were various indications as to what had happened so I determined that there was no third-party involvement, foul play or suspicious circumstances.
“We looked for a note but didn’t find one.”
After being removed from the car, Jodie was taken to Colchester General Hospital where she was pronounced dead at 2.10am.
A post-mortem examination was carried out and the cause of death was recorded as carbon monoxide poisoning.
The toxicology report showed that the level of carboxyhemoglobin was at 67 per cent and ethanol was at 42mg per 100ml of blood, almost half the level a person is deemed drunk.
Police found empty bottles of vodka, lemonade and Lucozade outside the car along with a helium gas canister and a packet of balloons.
The car keys were found in the mud nearby.
Coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray addressed Jodie’s parents, Betty and Paul Jose, and her sister Stacey Saville who came with her husband Carl.
She said: “You do seem to have been very supportive and she just seems to have been suffering from a very deep depression.
“I’ve been much helped by the letter you wrote to me. There’s no doubt you were ever so supportive, that just shines through. You did your best to help her when she was so depressed.”
In a letter to the court which the coroner read out, her family wrote: “We believe that Jodie 100 per cent meant to take her own life.
“We found a notepad that she’d written in with her thoughts and feelings and also things on her old phone like a search history of how to die painlessly.”
Mrs Beasley-Murray added: “I’ve come to the very sad conclusion that she intended to take her own life.
“I’m having regard to how depressed she was over the last few months and her previous attempt where she was clearly thinking of doing it.
“I’m having regard to the planning that she seems to have put into this, reserving the barbecue and going to park there where she wouldn’t be found and so on.
“In light of all those circumstances, I have to be sure that she formed the intention and took a deliberate action knowing it would result in her death.
“I conclude that Jodie Anne Jose killed herself. She was clearly much loved and had a lot going for her.
“It absolutely shines through how supportive you were of her, how much you tried to help her and I hope you remember all the happy memories you have of her.”