Teen cheerleader died ‘jumping in front of train day after hospital released her’

University of Loughborough sports student Sarah Hammond had faced struggles in her life, the inquest was told (Image: HNP Picture Desk/Hyde News & Pictures Ltd)

Get email updates with the day’s biggest stories

Invalid EmailSomething went wrong, please try again later.Sign upWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Your information will be used in accordance with ourPrivacy Notice.Thank you for subscribingWe have more newslettersShow meSee ourprivacy notice

A teenager who moved in with her boyfriend during the coronavirus lockdown jumped in front of a train the day after they broke up, an inquest heard.

Sarah Hammond moved in to Harry Hadden-Wight's family home in April 2020, and things appeared to go well initially before problems began to surface, a coroner's court was told.

The 19-year-old University of Loughborough sports student had a history of mental health issues, including anorexia and self-harm.

Her boyfriend's mum, Caroline Hadden-Wight, told the hearing at Woking Coroners' Court: "Sarah was quiet and shy but very sweet and kind.

"Harry is a very thoughtful young man but he did not think she was emotionally stable, he worried about problems if they broke up."

The devastated boyfriend told the court: "Things started to change when Sarah moved in, she would look through my phone and she did not like me seeing my friends.

"As time went on I realised I did not want to be in that relationship. Sarah was in denial and did not realise what was happening."

She tragically died at Brookwood railway station in Surrey
(Image: Surrey Advertiser)

The court heard Harry had gone for a walk with Sarah near her home in Woking, Surrey, on June 21 to explain what was happening.

He explained: "I went there again to let her know we had broken up. She was clinging to a park bench and would not leave.

"To get there to move I had to give her some hope. It was really hard and I struggled to get away."

After they returned home, the girl's mum tried to lock her daughter in their house so she could keep her safe and watch over her, the inquest heard.

But Sarah stole the keys to the car she shared with her brother and jumped out of an unsecured window, the court was told.

Mrs Hammond called the police to try to track down her daughter, who was later found at Harry's grandmother's house, in Sunningdale, Berks.

"She did not want to believe what was happening," Harry said. "She made a threat that if I left she would take her own life. The police then came and she ran into the undergrowth."

Sarah was eventually tracked down to an open patch in the wooded part of the property and was persuaded to get into an ambulance.

Despite a number of attempts to escape, including escaping all her restraints without anyone noticing, she was taken to Farnham Road Hospital, Guildford, Surrey.

Sarah was sectioned and held overnight but the next day she was discharged and sent home in a taxi, without her parent's knowledge.

Harry explained: "Later that day I had about 23 missed calls from Sarah and quite a few texts.

"She was lovely but it had gone wrong. I put my phone on silent so I did not see the messages or that she was no longer in the hospital."

Earlier in their relationship, she had mentioned that if she had to kill herself she would jump in front of a train, the inquest heard.

She took her own life at Brookwood Station, Surrey shortly after 4pm on June 22 last year, the court was told.

Mrs Hadden-Wight said: "In hindsight, I wonder whether coming to live with us was the right decision.

"She had a lot of demons and could not deal with the break up of her relationship. She was not given the chance to get out of this position she was put in."

The coroner said the scope of the inquest, which will last for two days, is to examine the decision to discharge the teenager from hospital and to see if there were any opportunities missed in her care.

The hearing continues.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *