Mum killed herself after losing children

PUBLISHED: 07:00 20 August 2012


A WESTON mum suffocated herself with a plastic bag because she was so devastated at losing custody of her two young sons.

An inquest at Flax Bourton Coroners Court heard this week how 31-year-old Louise Beard ‘loved and missed’ her children so much that she took her own life.

The 31-year-old was found dead on her sofa following a custody hearing with her estranged husband on December 30 last year.

Police were called to her Amberey Road home on Weston’s Bournville estate on January 3 after her mother Pauline phoned them concerned that she had not heard from her daughter since the day of the hearing.

The inquest heard on Tuesday how the mother-of-two had suffered with depression for long periods throughout her life, as well as reliance on alcohol and prescribed medicines.

When her body was found, empty tablet packets, glasses and an unopened bottle of wine were nearby.

The court also heard how Ms Beard had a troubled childhood and suffered with panic attacks later in life.

Before her husband was awarded custody of her sons for the ‘time being’ on December 30, they had been taken into foster care.

A report from her GP described how she had become ‘low and anxious’ when her husband left her in 2008.

But despite feeling too anxious to go out at times, she also had periods of time in the months before her death when she would be able to socialise with friends.

Deputy assistant coroner Terence Moore said he believed Ms Beard had intended to take her own life.

He said: “She had a history of overdosing and she was someone who loved and missed her children very much.

“This lady had come to the end of her tether and took her own life.”

Medical reports read during the inquest described how she had three times the permitted drink-drive level of alcohol in her blood when her body was found and there were no signs she had been attacked.

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