Sponsored Ad

'Deny, deny, deny': Students texted each other as police investigated 'fresher who died from drinking too much alcohol'


fresher who died from drinking too much alcohol

Students at a party where a fresher is believed to have died after drinking excessive amounts of alcohol messaged one another “deny, deny, deny” ahead of police interviews, an inquest hearing heard.

Edward Farmer was 20 years old when he died at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in December last year after attending an Agricultural Society event.

Mr Farmer’s parents have raised issues around the investigation into their son’s death which led to the inquest being postponed, a court heard.

A pre-inquest review was told they have concerns about one individual who had not been interviewed by police and about text message exchanges between students who had been at the first year initiation event.

Representing the family Simon Kernyckyj said: “There are concerns from the family that there were text messages circulating after the incident which said ‘deny, deny, deny’ before they were interviewed by police.

He continued: “The family are concerned that these were not investigated.”

Mr Kernyckyj then raised concerns that only three of the 17 student witnesses set to be called were first year university students, the Newcastle Chronicle reports.


Around 50 people were at the party and 20 to 30 of those were in their first term of Newcastle University, the inquest review hearing was told.

Mr Kernyckyj said: “There are only three first years when they were the people who were the subject of this event, there seems to be a disproportionate number of people running the event compared to those attending.”

Questions were also raised about the Student Union’s involvement in the inquest as the organisation is not currently classed as an interested party, although Newcastle University is.

The University’s legal representative David Lewis said that the Student’s Union is a separate organisation to the University itself.

He also said that the student witnesses should perhaps be advised to look for legal representation.

Mr Lewis said: “It strikes me that it is in the realms of possibility that some individuals will have fingers pointed at them at this inquest and may wish to have legal representation. There is one person in particular who may wish to do this.”

The inquest has been suspended until May next year while more evidence is gathered.

Coroner Karen Dilks said: “A number of issues should be subject of further exploration. I will direct the senior police officer in the case to provide me with a written statement from the additional interview and a statement setting out the perimeters of the police investigation and what criteria was applied.”

Turning to Mr Farmer’s parents she said: “I have to operate within the limitations I have. I understand that you want as many answers to as many questions that you have and that you want to ensure that nothing like this happens again in the future.”

A Northumbria Police spokesperson said: "We can confirm that no criminal offences were found in this case and that a report was prepared for the coroner.

"We are unable to comment further on the investigation until the full inquest has concluded."

Source: Mirror

Post a Comment