Widow ‘could not cope after sudden death of husband’

Eastbourne Magistrates Courts (Law Courts) October 18th 2012 E42155N ENGSUS00120130830151812
Eastbourne Magistrates Courts (Law Courts) October 18th 2012 E42155N ENGSUS00120130830151812

An Uckfield woman took her own life two months after her husband died of pancreatic cancer, an inquest has heard.

Sally Roser was found dead at her home, at The Jays, Ridgewood on the evening of May 25, 2015 after worried neighbours raised the alarm to the police.

A sample of her blood was tested as part of a post mortem examination. It revealed high levels of morphine consistent with fatal toxicity, and her cause of death was recorded as morphine toxicity.

The inquest, held at Eastbourne Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, October 8, heard how the 52-year-old had no history of mental illness or depression. However, she had been left devastated by the sudden death of her husband Alan, who passed away on March 25, 2015 - just 26 days after being diagnosed with cancer.

The pair, who met 30 years ago while working in Argos, owned and managed an audio equipment business together.

Sally’s brother, Gary Hales, told the inquest: “Sally never had time to get used to him [Alan] being ill and his death devastated her. She couldn’t cope with being on her own.”

He also spoke of her ‘constant worry’ and stress trying to sell the business.

Sally’s next-door neighbour for almost 20 years, Andrew Crisp, told the inquest how Sally would often socialise with him and his wife, along with some of the other neighbours, so when he hadn’t seen or heard from her all day on May 25, he became worried.

After spotting an open window, Mr Crisp borrowed a ladder and called to Mrs Roser through the window, but got no response. He looked through the blinds and saw her lying in bed. He spotted an open notepad on a dresser below the window, and reached down to grab it. After retrieving it, he found a suicide note written on the first page.

Mr Crisp called the police, who entered Mrs Roser’s property. Signs indicated she had been dead for around seven or eight hours. Mrs Roser had left notes around the house, explaining what she wanted to happen following her death.

Coroner Alan Craze recorded a conclusion of suicide, adding: “She knew exactly what she was doing and planned it carefully. It’s a very sad and tragic case that has been a shock to a lot of people.”

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