Inquest opens into lesbian prison suicide

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The inquest into the death of a woman who was found hanging in her cell has heard that her lesbian lover had been unfaithful.

Lisa Doe, 25, was found hanging in her cell on September 11, 2007.

It had only been an hour before that she had been released from HMP Send’s medical wing, where she had been transferred after self harming because of an argument with her recently released partner, Kim Tudor.

Doe told a nurse that “life was not worth living” but unfortunately before her suicide risk had been properly assessed, Doe was found hanging by her trainer laces. She was rushed to the Royal Surrey County Hospital but was later pronounced dead.

According to, Michael Burgess, the Surrey coroner, told the jury that Ms Doe had experienced a “troubled” childhood, including reports that she had been sexually abused by her father.

She had also given birth to a daughter when she was 17 but had walked out before the girl’s first birthday because her partner, Mr Tutor had allegedly turned violent.

It was in April 2003 that Doe was sentenced to life imprisonment at Winchester Crown Court after being convicted of murdering 39-year-old Patrick Garwood, who she stabbed three times with a kitchen knife at her home.

Her mother, Jane Slade, told jurors: “Shortly before, she had been raped. She took pity on a homeless man [Mr Garwood] and let him stay with her for six days. They took drugs together but he became violent and she stabbed him in self defence.”

In 2006, Ms Doe was transferred to HMP Send where she met Tudor and a relationship between the two ensued.

Doe told other inmates that she would “kill herself” if Tudor finished with her. Two days before her death, Doe discovered that on her release, Tudor had slept with another woman, Kelly Beasley.

At 4pm on September 11, Ms Doe was brought to the medical wing distressed and still clutching a razor blade. Despite this, prison nurse, Ann Cane told the inquest that after chatting for half an hour, the prisoner “seemed much calmer and I had no reason to think she would do anything”.

However, when Ms Cane went to assess Doe’s situation during her medical rounds just after 5pm, she discovered her hanging from the bathroom door.

A devastated Ms Slade told jurors at the inquest: “I miss Lisa so much and still speak to her. She will always be my little girl. She would have wanted to live for her daughter, she loved that little girl. This was an act of desperation.”

The inquest continues at Quadrant Court in Woking.