A HUSBAND strangled his wife before killing himself by leaping down a hospital stairwell, an inquest heard.
Terence Hoyland, aged 68, was found fatally injured at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield shortly after his wife Margaret Hoyland, 66, had been discovered dead on the kitchen floor at their home on Severnside Gardens, Woodhouse.
The Hoylands’ son, Paul, told a Sheffield inquest that Terence had been “struggling” before the killing and had confessed he was “hearing voices”.
A post-mortem examination found Margaret’s injuries were consistent with being strangled with a ligature and that her nose and mouth had been covered.
Paul said he had received a phone call from his sister Jacqueline Abrahams on April 25 last year, the day of the two deaths.
Jacqueline told him their father had visited her house and dropped off a box which contained a will along with bank details and car documents.
“My sister noticed that mum wasn’t in the car - my mum and dad went everywhere,” Paul said.
“She said, ‘Dad doesn’t look himself’ and upon that I went down to my parents’ house.”
The inquest heard Terence had visited his GP a month earlier and said he had trouble sleeping and was suffering stress as his son’s marriage was breaking up. He was prescribed medication.
DS John Wheaton, from South Yorkshire Police, said: “His actions with handing over the documents speak volumes and would rule out any possibility anyone else was involved.”
Paul described his mum and dad, married for 48 years, as a “brilliant” couple, adding: “They were top parents, you couldn’t wish for anybody better.”
Terence suffered multiple injuries, including a fractured skull, spinal damage and a brain haemorrhage, when he fell down the staircase.
DS Wheaton said it was a considerable drop.
Assistant deputy coroner David Urpeth recorded a verdict of unlawful killing for Margaret, and ruled Terence took his own life.
Calling the deaths an “utter tragedy”, Mr Urpeth added: “We will never know what triggered the events on this terrible day - that will remain a mystery.”