Doncaster salesman upset over ‘false’ sex assault allegations in A1(M) suicide tragedy

The bridge over the A1(M) on Broomhouse Lane, Balby,
The bridge over the A1(M) on Broomhouse Lane, Balby,
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A man who threw himself off a bridge onto a Doncaster motorway had just been told he would have to undergo an intimate examination by police as part of a historic sex abuse inquiry.

Garry Parnell, aged 51, had vehemently denied the allegations by a woman dating back to her childhood - and his family told a Doncaster inquest she had demanded a large sum of money to drop the case.

The former salesman had suffered depression for many years, since the suicide of his mother and the amputation of his right leg following complications from a motorcycle accident.

And the woman, who cannot be identified, was aware he was hoping to win a substantial compensation payment from Doncaster Council as the result of an accident in which his electric wheelchair fell down an uncovered manhole.

Mr Parnell, of Priestley Close, Balby, died instantly from a severe head injury when he climbed over the barrier on the Broomhouse Lane bridge over the A1(M) on March 31 and plunged onto the hard shoulder.

Less than an hour earlier he had received a call from Det Con Becky Braithwell telling him he would need to attend the police station later that week for another interview and an examination for evidential reasons.

Mr Parnell immediately phoned his brother, Mark, and told him: “I ain’t doing that, they’ve destroyed my life enough already.”

Mary Parnell, Garry’s wife, said he was continually upset by the allegations and the time it was taking police to investigate.

She added: “In our minds it was clearly a false allegation. I think it was out of order the police took so long to sort this out. I am devastated, and so are his children.”

Mrs Parnell said the woman had told Mark she would ‘stop the allegation’ - if she received £50,000.

DC Braithwell said it was not abnormal for a case of this type to take several months and Mr Parnell didn’t seem ‘unduly distressed’ when she spoke to him on the afternoon of his death.

The Crown Prosecution Service had asked for the intimate examination.

Eyewitnesses told the inquest Mr Parnell ‘showed no emotion’ as he jumped.

Assistant Coroner Mark Beresford said Mr Parnell had vehemently denied the allegations. He recorded a suicide verdict.