Sussex woman drinks herself to death in one sitting

A Sussex woman drank so much alcohol in one sitting that she took her own life, a coroner has concluded.

Parkside, High Street, Worthing. Picture: Google Maps
Parkside, High Street, Worthing. Picture: Google Maps

Roberta Taylor, 66, was found unresponsive by neighbours on the path outside her house in Parkside, High Street, on August 27, 2018, and was pronounced dead by paramedics at 9.02am.

Assistant coroner Christopher Wilkinson concluded she took her own life by drinking ‘significant amounts’ of alcohol on the morning of her death.

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He said: “It is more likely than not that she intended to die because of that act.”

Parkside, High Street, Worthing. Picture: Google Maps

Tuesday's inquest heard that Miss Taylor had bipolar disorder and her mental health deteriorated after the deaths of her mother in 2015 and her aunt in 2018.

The retired administrative assistant blamed herself for her aunt’s death, having visited her with a bad cold days before she died, the inquest heard.

The inquest also heard how Miss Taylor had threatened to take her own life on several occasions and her family had become concerned about her behaviour.

In January, 2018, she was admitted to Worthing Hospital after taking an overdose of prescribed medication, but made a full recovery and received support from mental health services.

The inquest heard how, in the days leading up to her death, she was picked up by taxi from Beachy Head near Eastbourne and the driver was so concerned by her behaviour that he called police to ask for a welfare check.

Officers visited Miss Taylor at home, but she told them she had no intention to harm herself.

The inquest heard how notes were found after her death setting out who was her next of kin, and that there was no physical evidence of her being a long-term abuser of alcohol.

If you are affected by any issues raised in this story, contact The Samaritans for confidential support on 116 123.