Dr Kelly committed suicide over fear of public disgrace: Hutton

Dr David Kelly took his own life over fears of losing his job and of being publicly disgraced, the Hutton inquiry was told.

According to today's report, a further contributory factor in the scientist's death was the fear that his life's work had been "totally undermined" and that he did not share his problems and feelings with other people.

Dr Kelly went for a walk close to his Oxfordshire home on July 17 and, when he did not return that evening, a search was mounted. His body was found in woodland next day.

The principal cause of death was "bleeding from incised wounds to his left wrist which Dr Kelly had inflicted on himself with the knife found beside his body. It is probable that the ingestion of an excess amount of Coproxamol tablets coupled with apparently clinically silent coronary artery disease would have played a part in bringing about death more certainly and more rapidly than it would have otherwise been the case", according to the report.

Lord Hutton also stated that the UN weapons inspector had not been suffering from any "significant mental illness" at the time of his death.

According to evidence given by the Professor of Psychiatry at Oxford University, Professor Hawton, most likely the major factor in Dr Kelly's mindset prior to his death as a "severe loss of self esteem, resulting from his feeling that people had lost trust in him and from his dismay at being exposed to the media".

It is known that when Dr Kelly testified at the Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC) he was caught out by questioning by an MP who had been primed by Andrew Gilligan.

During his evidence to the FAC it was revealed that Dr Kelly had misled his bosses at the MoD when he told them, on July 14, that that he had not spoken to Newsnight journalist Susan Watts about the September dossier. Dr Kelly had in fact talked to her on the phone on May 30.

The Hutton inquiry heard that Dr Kelly "must have also been worried" that this lie would emerge and that he would face disciplinary action.


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