Suicide after love split
A BROKEN-hearted driver died at the wheel of his car, clutching a photo of his former girlfriend as fumes poured in through the window.When the woman realised what he had been planning, she raced to the police station but was too late -officers had already found a body in his car, in a field between Nacton and Levington.
A BROKEN-hearted driver died at the wheel of his car, clutching a photo of his former girlfriend as fumes poured in through the window.
When the woman realised what he had been planning, she raced to the police station but was too late -officers had already found a body in his car, in a field between Nacton and Levington.
An inquest at County Hall heard a statement from Russell Stopher's son Matthew, who said his dad's girlfriend had found a new love.
Ipswich-born delivery driver Russell Stopher, 51, had lived with Susan Kempster since September last year, at Adastral Close in Felixstowe, and had been seeing her for two years.
Russell had mentioned suicide to her, and when Matthew spoke to him the day before his body was found, he said he needed to get out of Felixstowe as his life had been 'messed up' because Susan had found somebody else.
The court heard she met her new boyfriend in September last year.
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Russell had mentioned self harm, then promised he wouldn't do anything, but harmed himself several times.
In November last year he tried to commit suicide by gassing himself in his car, but failed when the pipe melted.
The court heard that on November 17, Susan saw him putting a plastic bag in the car, but assumed it contained clothes.
She stayed out all night but her daughter called her the next day, to say Russell had unusually left both his mobile phones behind.
She realised the plastic bag was the one she kept her vacuum cleaner pipe in, and rushed to the police station to report her concerns, but officers told her he had already been found.
Pc Robert Stewart said passers-by John Norris and David Gloyne had found the Peugeot and man inside, in a field. There had been a vacuum cleaner pipe connected to the exhaust, through the window and sealed with silver tape.
Pc Stewart said in his statement: "The driver held a small photograph in his right hand of his ex girlfriend."
Dr Philip Judd at Ipswich Hospital confirmed the death was due to carbon monoxide poisoning, as analysis of Russell's blood showed 87 per cent of it was saturated with the poison.
Recording a verdict of suicide, coroner Dr Peter Dean said: "It is clear from the various notes written, that Mr Russell Stopher both understood and intended the consequences of his actions, and took his own life."