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‘Very kind and caring man’ died in intense car fire, inquest hears

PUBLISHED: 19:03 22 October 2020

Great grandmother Patricia Hughes died as the result of a serious fire Suffolk Coroners Court heard Picture: ADAM HOWLETT

Great grandmother Patricia Hughes died as the result of a serious fire Suffolk Coroners Court heard Picture: ADAM HOWLETT

Archant

A “very kind and caring man” was found dead after firefighters tackled an intense vehicle fire, an inquest has heard.

Robert Wyer, 64, was found in his Nissan which was parked in a secluded lay-by in Green Lane, Great Barton, following the fire.

An inquest into his death which took place at Suffolk Coroners’ Court in Ipswich today, heard that he had been identified through DNA testing, weeks after the incident.

The court heard how Mr Wyer, from Bury St Edmunds, had left home during the morning of August 27, 2019, to go to a meeting at the bank.

Mr Wyer had then driven his car to the lay-by, a location where he was known to sit and read his newspaper regularly.

Witnesses reported seeing him in his car, fiddling with something near to the central console at around 11am.

However, by 11.45am the Nissan was well alight.

The fire service was called, however by the time they had arrived the blaze had intensified.

After firefighters secured the scene, a body was discovered within the car, which was later identified to be Mr Wyer.

His partner of 17 years, Larissa Demidova described Mr Wyer as a “very kind, loving and caring man.”

“He was very soft, never argued with anyone and did not raise his voice,” she said.

Following the blaze, fire investigation officers attended the scene and said that the car has suffered “significant” damage.

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Fire investigator Dale Nunn said that one of the windows of the car was likely to have been partially opened at the time of ignition, but said that all of the windows smashed such was the intensity of the fire.

He said that the open window in combination with a breeze on the day could have led to the fire burning so fiercely.

Mr Nunn told the court that he believed that the fire was started intentionally by the occupant.

He said there was no evidence that any accelerant was used, such was the damage caused by the fire.

A police investigation found that Mr Wyer had suffered a history of mental health illness.

He had also been struggling financially and his house was due to be repossessed on the day of his death.

Concluding the inquest, assistant coroner Tim Deeming passed on his “sincere condolences” to the family of Mr Wyer.

He concluded that he died from the inhalation of smoke fumes, as a result of suicide.


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