Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Tragedy of Benjie

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Tragedy of Benjie

Article excerpt

Byline: Joanna Desira

A man who struggled to come to terms with the disappearance of his sister died after taking an overdose of tablets, an inquest heard.

But Deputy Teesside Coroner Gordon Hetherington said he did not believe Richard Anthony Hopkins, known as Benjie, intended to take his own life, and recorded a verdict of misadventure. Mr Hopkins, 29, died at his home in Southfield Road, Middlesbrough, on February 4 after taking an overdose of anti-depressants.

His sister Rachel Wilson went missing on May 31, 2002, at the age of 19 and has never been found. The inquest in Middlesbrough heard the tablets belonged to Mr Hopkins' uncle, also called Richard Hopkins.

The hearing was also told Mr Hopkins had a history of depression and had taken overdoses previously, including after his girlfriend died of a brain tumour. Mr Hopkins had recovered from heroin addiction two years previously.

Stephen Branley, a friend who lived in a neighbouring room told the inquest they visited a pub during the afternoon of the day of Mr Hopkins' death. …

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