Girl, 14, killed herself three weeks after friend's suicide

A schoolgirl killed herself at the second attempt three weeks after her friend was found hanged, an inquest was told yesterday.

Jade Hughes, 14, left on her home computer a simple message to her friend that said, "Oh well, like I said, I will be with you soon", before walking to a railway bridge and killing herself.

An inquest in Swansea was told yesterday that Jade had been so depressed by Kirsty Botto's death that she had made her first suicide attempt on the night of the funeral. Kirsty, 13, had become friends with Jade when the older girl moved to Swansea in 2001 and joined Pentrehafod Comprehensive. The two were neighbours on the Landore estate.

On 17 March last year, Kirsty was found hanged in her bedroom. After the funeral, which was held nine days later, Jade attempted to emulate her friend, the coroner was told.

Detective Constable Philip Sparrow said: "After her mother had gone to bed, Jade tied one leg of her trousers around her neck and the other to a curtain rail. But the knot slipped and she crashed to the floor." The noise woke her mother, Lynn, 38, who went to investigate and found a suicide note in Jade's bedroom.

The girl was sent to a child psychiatrist and the family felt she had improved after a short family holiday in Cornwall.

But on 11 April, after an evening drinking cider and wine in a park with friends, she returned home only long enough to write her note to Kirsty and to search the internet for "death suicide poems".

She then rejoined her friends before leaving them and hanging herself by her jumper. She was found just after a midnight by a couple out walking. By her side was her mobile phone, which her mother had been ringing repeatedly since discovering her missing. On it police found a text message from the schoolgirl that read: "Didn't have time to write a note. Love you all."

As an officer read the note, the telephone rang and he answered it to find Jade's frantic mother asking about her daughter. All he could say was that someone would call on her shortly, he said.

"Kirsty committed suicide by hanging herself in her bedroom. This upset Jade and her friends. But there was no evidence of a suicide pact," said Det Con Sparrow.

Previous reports suggested the deaths were part of a chain of events that began when a friend of Kirsty's ­ Ross Hooper, 13 ­ died from sniffing butane gas in a Swansea car park. Others said the girls had been bullied. After Kirsty's death, her mother, Angela Roper, said: "Ross was one of her best friends and she never got over him. She used to talk to me about it and get upset."

After the Swansea and Gower coroner, Richard Morgan, recorded a verdict of suicide Jade's mother denied that she had been bullied at school. Mrs Hughes praised her "beautiful, kind-hearted daughter" who, she said, had developed a depressive illness. The teenager, who was born in Truro, Cornwall, had a history of self-harm going back to the age of 11.

The inquest was told that she had gone through a "Gothic" period when she became obsessed with death and spent a lot of time at a local cemetery. Det Con Sparrow said that as a result of domestic violence at home when she was younger, Jade had not seen her father for six or seven years. She had moved to Swansea with her mother, where she attended four schools as the family moved around the city.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
Ray Whelan was arrested earlier this week
Arts and Entertainment
In a minor key: Keira Knightley in the lightweight 'Begin Again'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Celebrated children’s author Allan Ahlberg, best known for Each Peach Pear Plum
books
News
peopleIndian actress known as the 'Grand Old Lady of Bollywood' was 102
News
Wayne’s estate faces a claim for alleged copyright breaches
peopleJohn Wayne's heirs duke it out with university over use of the late film star's nickname
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
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

Business Systems Analyst (Retail)

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum Up to 20% bonus: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: An...

Head of Digital Marketing,London

To £58k Contract 12 months: Charter Selection: Major household name charity se...

Lead Hand - QC

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Lead Hand - QCProgressive are recruiting...

Technical Manager / Lead - Mechanical.

£43000 - £45000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: A leading Br...

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice