Carl Buxton's death was not suicide, coroner rules

The late Carl Buxton. Picture submitted by family.
The late Carl Buxton. Picture submitted by family.

A coroner has ruled the death of a young man who deliberately placed himself in front of an oncoming van was not suicide.

Carl Buxton, 19, of Sherwood Road, Buxton, passed away on Bakewell Road in the town during the early hours of Tuesday, April 19, last year.

Mr Buxton's inquest concluded this afternoon with coroner Peter Nieto recording a narrative conclusion setting out the facts.

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RELATED STORY: Yesterday's coverage of Mr Buxton's inquest

In the narrative conclusion, Mr Nieto said: "There is evidence to conclude that Mr Buxton deliberately placed himself in front of the van, which caused his fatal injuries.

"However, there is insufficient evidence to conclude he intended his own death by placing himself in the path of the van; this is particularly so given his poor mental health at the time."

Before Mr Nieto recorded his conclusion, Dr John Sykes, medical director at Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, gave evidence at Chesterfield coroners' court and explained why Mr Buxton was not sectioned.

He said: "In Mr Buxton's case, he was engaged with clinicians.

"They were familiar with him and he seemed to have a good therapeutic relationship with them.

"He was taking some medication - he'd stopped taking his sulphide (an antipsychotic) but he was taking his clonazepam (a tranquilizer).

"He was able to get help.

"He wasn't showing dangerous behaviour.

"We know admitting people to hospital against their wishes often produces problems.

"Mr Buxton had the capacity to cooperate with home treatment."

Mr Nieto asked Dr Rhodes: "Do you feel it was the correct decision to continue to try and treat Mr Buxton in the community?"

Dr Rhodes replied: "On the balance of probabilities, based on the information at the time, yes."

The inquest heard the trust carried out a serious case review following Mr Buxton's death and has improved training in relation to the Mental Health Act 1983, among other things.

Mr Nieto said: "I don't raise any concerns in terms of the care and treatment provided to Mr Buxton."

He described Mr Buxton's death as 'tragic' and said mental health teams have a 'very difficult job to do'.