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Computer expert from Hucclecote took his own life after arrest

By The Citizen  |  Posted: February 27, 2013

Gloucestershire Coroner's Court

Gloucestershire Coroner's Court

A COMPUTER expert took his own life after being arrested on suspicion of possessing indecent images of children.

Gloucestershire Coroner's Court heard the body of 27-year-old Christopher Owen, who denied the allegations against him, was found at a bridge on the A417.

David Dooley, assistant deputy coroner for Gloucestershire, recorded a verdict of suicide following his death between the C&G and Zoons Court roundabouts on October 10, 2012.

Mr Owen, of Gilpin Avenue, Hucclecote, had left his car, containing letters to his family, in Larkhay Road. He e-mailed his wife telling her not to search for him and said where she would find the car.

The data centre engineer for Fasthosts Internet Limited had been arrested after Gloucestershire Police raided his home on August 17.

In a statement, PC Vanessa Wilcox paraphrased the letter, saying: "It said he could not cope with this life any more and this would be the quickest way of ending it."

He had unsuccessfully attempted to kill himself with an overdose of drugs and alcohol a day after his arrest and on that occasion e-mailed his work colleagues goodbye.

His wife, Elizabeth, told the inquest her husband was a "brave man".

She said he appeared to be getting better after he was diagnosed with depression and released from hospital.

She said: "I was concerned Chris was on the road to recovery and at no time did I suspect he wasn't."

Mr Dooley said: "He denied the allegations against him, but equally the police appear confident if they had carried on with their investigations it would have been given to the Crown Prosecution Service.

"On August 17 his world appears to have been turned upside down. The day after he tried to take his own life.

"That was a serious and deliberate attempt to take his own life.

"He gave the impression to his wife that he was improving, but that does not appear to be the case.

"His actions were not accidental, not a cry help.

"It has left you all bereaved."