Young South Yorkshire woman found dead in hotel bath struggled mentally after loss of mum, inquest hears

A 25-year-old woman from Barnsley who was found dead in a hotel bathroom two years ago might have been struggling with emotional and psychological difficulties since the loss of her mother when she was 12.

Friday, 19th February 2021, 5:14 pm
Sheffield Coroner's Court, where the inquest was held .

Emily Grainger, of Pogmoor was found unconscious and unresponsive by emergency services at 10.30am on August 29, 2019 in the bath of one of the hotel rooms at the town's Premier Inn.

Assistant Coroner Katy Dickinson said based on pathology reports given to her, Emily had a history of self harm.

She said: "I understand that she was a little down at the time, when she had a split with her boyfriend and booked herself into the Premier Inn.

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"There was some CCTV footage that could confirm this, she went into that room alone - nothing suspicious in this matter."

The inquest also heard that on the day of the incident, the hotel room that Emily was in had an empty bottle of vodka and another which was two-thirds empty on the dressing table.

South Yorkshire Police Detective Sergeant Andrew Stefanak was one of the first to arrive at the scene.

He said: "We removed Emily from the bath - no obvious signs of any injury on her body and I understand that she had tried to self harm in the past but we didn't particularly know at that time."

He said Emily had her friends around but they all left before returning to her room on her own at about 5am, based on the CCTV footage.

Asked whether her friends said anything about Emily wanting to take her own life, Mr Stefanak said he didn't recall she had been depressed.

"The lady had been quite down the last few years of her life, but nothing specific. Nothing suspicious, no third party involved."

The inquest also heard from Alex Sutherland, a mental health practitioner from Barnsley Hospital’s Mental Health Liaison team who said that Emily was referred to them after being admitted for drug and alcohol overdose.

"We were contacted by the nurse by the acute medical unit at Barnsley Hospital wanting to refer Emily to mental health liaison and admitted through the night after an overdose 5-10mg tablets of diazepam and consuming a quantity of alcohol.”

Assistant Coroner Katy Dickinson then recorded that this was a drug-related death, and not suicide.

She said: "I am going to record that this is a drug-related death, and not going to record suicide because it is not clear what her intentions were at the time.

"It seems that maybe she had no intention to take her own life."

She also offered her condolences to Emily's family, who were not present at the inquest.

"It must be very difficult to lose her mum at such a young age. I'm very sad for her."

Following her death, Emily’s friends had raised almost £2000 to build and install a bench in Locke Park in her memory.

Apart from the memorial bench, the funds also went to MIND, a mental health charity.

If you're struggling, contact Samaritans on 116 123 or email [email protected]