Broadcaster's housekeeper 'killed herself after raid': Victim of robbery ordeal jumped from road bridge

POLICE in the Irish Republic are treating as suicide the death at the weekend of the 34-year-old housekeeper of Professor Anthony Clare, the prominent psychiatrist and broadcaster, four days after she was terrorised in a raid at his home.

Audrey Lett, who is thought to have had a history of mental illness, died on Saturday after jumping 130 feet from a road bridge spanning the Liffey valley near Dublin. Last Tuesday she was held captive for two hours during the robbery at the psychiatrist's west Dublin home.

Mrs Lett, her daughter Hannah, aged two, and Professor Clare's wife, Jane, and their daughter, Justine, 10, were threatened while two men ransacked the house. Mrs Clare was hit on the head and legs with the flat face of a machete and threatened with a hockey stick before being tied up with electric cable and locked in an upstairs cupboard.

The raiders escaped in her Peugeot car with IR pounds 5,000 worth of jewellery including Mrs Clare's engagement ring, a video recorder and hi-fi equipment. Before leaving they locked Mrs Lett and the two children into the cupboard with Mrs Clare. They were released two hours later when Mrs Lett's husband, Eric, arrived at the house.

Her white Metro car was found parked at the end of the West Link Bridge from close to where she jumped. She leaves two children.

A 19-year-old man from Clondalkin, south-west Dublin, has been charged with robbery.

Professor Clare is best known for his popular series In the Psychiatrist's Chair, broadcast on BBC Radio 4, in which he interviews celebrity 'patients'. His deceptively genial probing on occasion reached uncomfortably deep into the private lives of his famous 'patients', from the actress Sarah Miles to the DJ Jimmy Savile. This clinical incision into past trauma or present insecurity made irresistible listening with listeners apparently admitted as eavesdroppers.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: 3rd Line Virtualisation, Windows & Server Engineer

£40000 - £47000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A 3rd Line Virtualisation / Sto...

Recruitment Genius: Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Service Engineer

£26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A successful national service f...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive / Sales - OTE £25,000

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Fixed Term Contract

£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We currently require an experie...

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific