Dad Jumped To His Death After Being Wrongly Accused Of Child Abuse

14/08/2014 16:55 | Updated 22 May 2015

Dad jumped to his death after being wrongly accused of child abuse

A father jumped to his death from the Humber Bridge after he was falsely accused of child abuse.

Graham Smith, 56, had been cleared of sexually assaulting a young girl more than 20 years ago but he never recovered from the ordeal of going to court and had already tried to kill himself twice.

An inquest at Hull Coroner's Court heard how Graham wrote a suicide note, before cycling to the Humber Bridge from the city centre home he shared with his teenage daughter.

His brother Michael, who last saw Graham on the Sunday before his death at a family barbecue celebrating Father's Day, said: "After the allegations, he became a hermit. He wouldn't go out, he thought people were looking at him and pointing.

"He said he was scared of the daylight, that he liked it when it was night and no one could see him.

"We didn't expect him to turn up, because he had, we thought he might have turned a corner, but now I think he came to say bye when the whole family was together."

Marie Burgess, Graham's former girlfriend, and the mother of his teenage daughter, Kirsty, said he had tried to deal with his depression.

She said: "He did try to get back into the swing of things but it would only last a day or two and then he would go downhill again."

Kirsty, told the court how his mental state had deteriorated.

She said: "I remember Christmas was not like it usually was. He would normally buy all the Christmas presents early, but he left it right until the last minute. All his motivation was gone."

The coroner, Dr Paul Marks, recorded the cause of death as severe chest injuries caused by the fall from the bridge into the water.

He reached a conclusion of suicide and said: "It is particularly tragic that a grave and unfounded accusation of sexual misconduct was brought against him.

"His conduct remains unblemished but, sadly, despite being exonerated, his mood failed to improve and he took his own life."


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