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Missing woman 'highly likely' to be suicide

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: December 13, 2013

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An open verdict has been recorded into the likely suicide of a woman from Cornwall who went missing more than five years ago.

Wendy Pollard was last seen at her home in Longdowns, Penryn, by her partner on April 19, 2008.

Her blue Ford Fiesta was later found by police on a clifftop at Gunwalloe on the Lizard, although there was no trace of the 44-year-old.

After her disappearance, an extensive search of cliffs and coastline was carried out.

No body was ever found, leading Andrew Cox, deputy coroner for Cornwall, to record the cause of death as "unascertained" at the inquest in Truro last week.

But he said it was "highly likely" that Mrs Pollard took her own life based on evidence from her son Ashley Fuller and Detective Inspector Ben Beckerleg.

Mr Cox said: "I think it is the view of both witnesses that Mrs Pollard has taken her own life."

DI Beckerleg told the inquest a suicide note was found in her car and six other handwritten suicide notes were found at her home when the police became involved on April 20, 2008.

He said police had tried to trace her identity since her disappearance.

"There was no indication that she was alive," he said. "I considered all of the evidence both material and from witnesses and concluded that, regrettably, Mrs Pollard did commit suicide and that, regrettably, we have been unable to recover her body."

Mr Fuller told the inquest his mother had made previous attempts to take her own life using sleeping tablets.

He said that, after the first attempt on December 31, 2007, she was admitted to Longreach Hospital mental health unit.

He added that she had made another overdose attempt using sleeping pills in the following months.

"After she came out of Longreach she told me that she wanted to kill herself," he said, adding that, after the last overdose attempt, he found a letter in her car.

"The letter expressed an interest that she did not want to be around anymore."

When asked by Mr Cox if the verdict came as a surprise to him, he replied: "No, not at all.

"In April (2008) she was really bad," said Mr Fuller. "I did think she was really down and thought she was going to do it then. It came as no shock."

Giving his verdict, Mr Cox said: "It is highly likely that Mrs Pollard took her own life but in the absence of a body I cannot be sure."

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