Depressed woman jailed for suicide bid

A DEPRESSED Ipswich woman who set light to her home in a bid to kill herself has been jailed for 15 months.Tracey Jackson, 26, used a cigarette lighter to start a fire on her bedroom carpet in her Newnham Court flat.

A DEPRESSED Ipswich woman who set light to her home in a bid to kill herself has been jailed for 15 months.

Tracey Jackson, 26, used a cigarette lighter to start a fire on her bedroom carpet in her Newnham Court flat.

She then rang a friend called Marie to tell her what she had done and her friend telephoned the emergency services.

Peter Gair, prosecuting at Ipswich Crown Court, said Jackson, who had a record for causing criminal damage, told police she was trying to kill herself.

Jackson, who was given oxygen after suffering smoke inhalation, pleaded guilty to committing arson on March 1 this year, at around 7pm. About £50 of damage was caused to the flat.

The court heard that other occupied flats surrounded her ground floor Orwell Housing Association home. Jackson admitted she had not considered the possible consequences to other residents.

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Mr Gair said that at the time of the offence Jackson was on bail from South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court where she had pleaded guilty to damaging property, assaulting police, possessing cannabis and having a bladed article.

She was due to return to the court on May 17 for sentencing.

Judge Jeremy Richards, at Ipswich crown court, said Jackson's pre-sentence and psychiatric reports made "desperately sad" reading.

The court heard that Jackson had suffered a disturbing childhood and her previous offences of damaging property were usually breaking windows so she could use glass to self-harm.

Jackson became even more depressed recently following the death of her "mother figure" Tess, who died after a long illness.

The court heard that Jackson had been receiving counselling in prison since she was remanded on March 1 but this had been withdrawn after a period of self-harming.

Judge Richards said: "The court of appeal has made it clear that whatever the emotional pressures are, these kinds of offences are considered very serious and are likely to lead to a custodial sentence.

"Your early life has been plagued by unhappiness and a lack of safety and security and I have seen how damaging that can be."

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