Grieving nurse had spoken of suicide
February 15, 2010
A nurse who was found dead on her sofa had taken an overdose of her daughter’s painkillers, an inquest heard.
Lindsay Davies, 50, was discovered by her 22-year-old daughter at the family home in Southcote on August 26.
She had just finished a 10-day stint of night shifts at the Duchess of Kent House in West Reading and the inquest heard it was thought she decided to have a few drinks and fall asleep on the sofa.
Her husband Ian, known as Terry, woke to the sound of her falling off the sofa at 2am and went downstairs to pick her up and put her back on the settee at their home in Worcester Close.
Giving evidence at the inquest on Tuesday, Mr Davies said that he had left for work at around 6.30am and his wife was still snoring soundly on the sofa. He said: “She had just finished night shifts and was exhausted. It was not unusual for her to have a few drinks and relax when she knew she didn’t have to go to work the next day.
“She had mentioned a few things about taking her life but it was soon after her mother died and I just thought it was normal to talk like that. I didn’t think she would actually do anything, especially not where her family would find her.”
Mrs Davies, who had a history of depression, had discussed taking her life with her daughter but had said she would walk into the sea until she drowned and take her beloved dog Charlie with her.
Her husband found a number of empty pill packets in the house and some food bags of ham that had been laced with pills. But the dog, who had been sleeping next to her, showed no signs of poisoning.
Berkshire coroner Peter Bedford said that Mrs Davies had pills in her stomach containing a painkiller that was prescribed to her daughter who also suffered depression.
The pills were a potentially fatal dose.
A post-mortem examination also found a mixture of other painkillers and anti-depressants in therapeutic rather than fatal amounts, but they could have worked to enhance the effect of the pills.
Recording an open verdict, Mr Bedford said: “There is not enough evidence to allow me to reach a clear conclusion.
“There is no suicide note, there is only one drug that she overdosed in her body when you expect someone to try and take all the pills you could get your hands on, and the fact she had said she would not do it at home where her daughter would find her.
“There is doubt for me there.”