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8:00am Thursday 31st January 2013
By Josh Layton
A GRANDMOTHER took her own life after a string of personal tragedies including a vicious sexual assault for which her attacker escaped justice.
The body of Terina Mackie, a former bus driver who had suffered from depression, was discovered by police in her home on April 24 last year. The 40-year-old, from Castleton Road, Middleleaze, had suffered the loss of her father and been subjected to a vicious sex attack.
An inquest into her death at Salisbury Coroners’ Court yesterday heard evidence from her daughter Kirsty Wright. In the statement, read by Swindon and Wiltshire coroner David Ridley, she said: “A number of events in my mum’s life had a severe impact. “The fact that her father died hit her very badly and she very much struggled with bereavement and the loss of her father.
“That understandably affected Terina, partly because the individual concerned was never convicted and also the nature of the sexual assault itself, which was a particularly harrowing one. “These two events were very much life-changing events and following that Terina became depressed. “She was seen by a doctor and given a variety of anti-depressant tablets.”
Miss Mackie was also affected by the death of her dog Rocky. Her daughter said: “This hit her hardest of all. She was very depressed as a result of particularly that final event.” James Griffin, a friend, said in another statement that he had become aware that Miss Mackie had suffered sexual abuse early in her life from a family member.
The alarm was raised by Miss Mackie’s family and her neighbour Samantha Whiteside after they failed to make contact with her for several days despite the sound of laughter coming from her home, which could have been from her television.
Police entered her house after obtaining a spare key and found her body. Miss Mackie, who had made two previous suicide attempts, had been taking three types of medication for depression and a leg injury which included amitriptyline, an anti-depressant also used as a sedative at low doses.
At the post-mortem, 1.6 milligrams of the drug per litre of blood was found in her body.
The coroner concluded that Miss Mackie took her own life due to an overdose of the drug after falling into a depressive episode. He said: “I’m satisfied that this was one of those low moments, regrettably, in Terina’s life.”
Police found no evidence of anyone else being involved and suicide notes were discovered at the house.
Mr Ridley said: “They are not dated, but there is such a significant gap that took place between this attempt and other attempts, I’m satisfied beyond reasonable doubt they were related to this event.”