Ex-soldier ‘didn’t get the support he needed’ for mental health issues before he died in Barnsbury flat
- Credit: Archant
A vulnerable man “didn’t get the support he needed” before being found dead in his Barnsbury flat on June 1, his step-mum has said.
Former soldier Kieron Mapplebeck was found dead at the Samuel Lewis Buildings, Liverpool Road, last month.
Kieron, 33, had a history of mental health and addiction problems. Now Fiona Reynolds says social services should have done more to protect him.
Fiona also claims cops investigating Kieron’s death didn’t answer her calls for a 10 days, then blamed the silence on their phone network.
“Everyone gets upset when someone dies,” said Fiona. “And people look around for a scapegoat but we’re disappointed because we feel Kieron’s death hasn’t been properly investigated due to his mental health problems.”
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She added: “We are living in a dual society where the level of police attention depends on who you are and where you come from. I can’t imagine the police not investigating properly if a banker had died – but all citizens deserve to be treated the same.”
Despite having a social worker, Fiona claims the council failed to adequately support Kieron, especially after he tried to kill himself at Victoria station last year.
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“It was an absolute miracle,” she said. “The doctors couldn’t believe it, as they had never known someone to crack a train window and survive.”
Fiona added: “For years people worked on his addiction but Kieron had a mental health problem long before anything else – he didn’t get the support he needed.”
Kieron’s older brother Ricky, 34, who also has mental health problems, was staying with him when he died.
She says Ricky was “traumatised” during the interview and has been sleeping rough since, as he can’t access the flat. But Fiona says none of the other family members, or Kieron’s housing worker – who he was meant to meet the day he died – have been interviewed.
The inquest into Kieron’s death happen at St Pancras Coroners’ Court on September 27, but Fiona says Kieron’s social worker isn’t being called to give evidence.
A Met spokesperson said: “I can confirm that following initial enquiries the death was deemed non-suspicious.”
Cllr Janet Burgess, Islington Council’s health chief, said: “The death of Kieron Mapplebeck is a tragedy, and our thoughts are with his family, friends and all those who knew him. We are committed to working with the NHS to support every person’s mental health needs.”
A spokesperson for the Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust, which provides mental health care, said: “We have offered our deepest condolences to the family of Kieron Mapplebeck, who was being offered regular care and support from our services.
“Following his tragic death, we carried out an immediate internal review which established that the care we provided was appropriate and timely.”