Caroline Flack begged for assault case to be dropped

Caroline Flack begged for assault case to be dropped in handwritten note found on coffee table after her body was discovered, inquest into Love Island star’s suicide hears

  • Presenter found dead on February 15, day after she heard CPS would pursue trial
  • Today inquest heard new details of a handwritten note found next to her body 
  • As well as referencing her boyfriend it also called for the charge to be dropped
  • To contact the Samaritans, call 116 123, email jo@samaritans.org or click here

Love Island presenter Caroline Flack begged for her assault case to be dropped in a handwritten note she left on the day she died, her inquest heard today.

The 40-year-old was found dead on February 15, the day after hearing the Crown Prosecution Service would go ahead with a trial for allegedly assaulting her model and former tennis player boyfriend Lewis Burton, 27. 

Today, Poplar Coroner’s Court heard new details of a note that was found near her body, which read: ‘Please let this court case be dropped and myself and Lewis find harmony.’ 

The TV star’s twin, Jody, who is watching the inquest on a video link with her mother, Christine, confirmed the note was written in her sister’s handwriting.

Flack strongly denied assaulting Mr Burton, and had pleaded not guilty to assault by beating at Highbury Corner Magistrates Court on December 23. 

Her sister said she tried to take her own life before the first court appearance, and then a further two times before she hanged herself at her London flat. 

Flack’s family have accused the CPS of pursuing a ‘show trial’ despite being aware of her worsening mental health, while prosecutors say they first recommended a caution but the police insisted on an assault charge. 

Caroline Flack was found dead on February 15, the day after she had learned the CPS was charging her with allegedly assaulting her former tennis player and model boyfriend Lewis Burton, 27. They are seen on a night out in London on October 16, 2019

Metropolitan Police Detective Inspector Lauren Bateman was the first witness called to give evidence at the inquest today. 

She discussed the decision to charge Flack with assault instead of issuing her with a caution.  

Flack’s family had become increasingly concerned about her mental health in the weeks before her death. She is pictured at the Royal Festival Hall in London on November 12, 2019

DI Bateman said she was the most senior detective on duty in the area on December 12, 2019, when Flack was in custody for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend, Lewis Burton.

She said she was in an open-plan office with the investigating officer and the officer due to take on the case, before they started talking about the case. 

‘We discussed whether it was possible for a caution. You need the same level of evidence to caution and charge. What differs when you consider a caution is the gravity of the offence, which informed my decision-making.

‘In relation to Caroline Flack’s interview, in my opinion there was no clear admission of guilt, it was unclear what she was admitting to.

‘Obviously Mr Burton believed he was assaulted with a lamp when he was asleep, but that is not the account she had given.’

DI Bateman was not present for Flack’s police interview, but said the lack of admission from her meant a caution was not appropriate.

Caroline Flack gave an account to police at the scene, read to the inquest, in which she said: ‘I did, I whacked him round the head like that,’ gesturing a swinging motion with her right hand to police, the inquest heard.

Flack told police: ‘I admit I did it. I used the phone. I had his phone in one hand, and my phone in the other.

To contact the Samaritans, call 116 123, email jo@samaritans.org or visit https://www.samaritans.org/ 

Today, Poplar Coroner’s Court heard new details of a note that was found near Flack’s body at her London flat (pictured on February 16, a day after her death). It read: ‘Please let this court case be dropped and myself and Lewis find harmony’

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