Depressed law lecturer drowned in reservoir

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A RETIRED Sheffield University law professor drowned himself at a Derbyshire beauty spot after weighing down his pockets with rocks, an inquest heard.

The body of Derek Morgan, aged 57, was found at the edge of Ladybower Reservoir, Derbyshire, on July 10 by walker Anthony Butterey.

An inquest heard Mr Morgan had filled his pockets with stones and fastened a belt around his wrists to prevent him saving himself.

The former lecturer spent three years in Australia after the end of a 25-year relationship with Celia Wells, also a university professor.

Ms Wells told police his drinking affected their relationship and he was generally not a happy person.

Mr Morgan returned to Sheffield in 2008 and his depression led to him being admitted to a psychiatric unit in the city, which he left in June.

He stayed for a time in Northumberland where he was admitted to hospital after an apparent overdose of temazepam.

A mental health crisis team in that district assessed him and discharged him on July 2, believing he was at low risk of suicide.

They told Sheffield mental health services he would be returning to his apartment in Westbourne Manor, Westbourne Road, Broomhill.

A city mental health worker visited him on July 5 but got no response. Police were alerted and he was classed as a missing person. Ms Wells told officers she had received a card and letter from him, including his bank details.

He wrote he was emotionally and physically ‘spent’ and had little money remaining.

Pathologist Dr Donesh Taraaporewalla gave the cause of death as drowning.

The Chesterfield inquest heard teeth marks were found on the belt where it had been fastened.

Deputy North Derbyshire Coroner Nigel Anderson recorded a verdict that Mr Morgan took his own life.