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Verdict on hanged man recorded

PUBLISHED: 20:12 30 August 2002 | UPDATED: 12:33 03 March 2010

A FORMER labourer was found hanged in a field alongside the A14 road at Bucklesham, an inquest heard.

The body of James Brookes, of Wherstead Road, Ipswich, was discovered on June 14 by a Northamptonshire woman who intended to spend the day in Felixstowe.

A FORMER labourer was found hanged in a field alongside the A14 road at Bucklesham, an inquest heard.

The body of James Brookes, of Wherstead Road, Ipswich, was discovered on June 14 by a Northamptonshire woman who intended to spend the day in Felixstowe.

An inquest at Ipswich Crown Court heard the woman was walking in a path in the area of the Seven Hills Roundabout on the A14 when she spotted what she believed to be a body.

Coroner Dr Paul Dean read a statement from the woman, Lynne Walker, who described seeing what she "believed to be a body hanging from a tree with a blue rope around its neck."

The inquest heard she didn't know if it was a dummy or a body and quickly left the scene before contacting police.

Police found the body of 40-year-old Mr Brookes hanging from the tree 30 to 40 metres from the road.

He was certified dead at 8 am that day and taken to Ipswich Hospital where he was later identified by family.

A home office pathologist confirmed Mr Brookes died by hanging and there was no trace of drugs in his system.

Dr Dean read from a statement from a psychiatrist at St Clements Hospital, Ipswich, who revealed Ipswich-born Mr Brookes had a history of self harm and impulsive acts.

However there was no evidence of severe depression, although it was felt he was in need of support.

Dr Dean said only an open verdict could be recorded because of "unanswered questions about his state of mind, understanding and intent and his history of impulsive behaviour."

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