Rape-in­quiry dad fell to death from bridge

Manchester Evening News - - NEWS - By ROBERT SUT­CLIFFE news­desk@men-news.co.uk @MENnews­desk

AN in­quest heard how a ‘bub­bly and much-liked’ Manch­ester bank worker killed him­self af­ter his pho­to­graph was re­leased as part of a rape in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Mwi­tumwa Ngenda, a 30-yearold fa­ther-of-two, was in a dis­tressed state on the morn­ing of Au­gust 28 last year af­ter Greater Manch­ester Po­lice cir­cu­lated an im­age of a man they wanted to ques­tion re­gard­ing an al­leged rape of­fence.

Mr Ngenda im­me­di­ately handed him­self in for ques­tion­ing, while mak­ing it clear he ve­he­mently de­nied the al­le­ga­tion.

His par­ents, Dr Love Mwi­tumwa Ngenda and his wife Gla­dys, along with his ex-wife Beth Mor­gan, lis­tened to five hours of ev­i­dence at Brad­ford Coroner’s Court about how their son fell to his death from Rain­bow Bridge which spans the M62 at Scam­mon­den near Hud­der­s­field.

Although he was a ‘bub­bly and much-liked’ bank worker at RBS in Manch­ester, he had a his­tory of de­pres­sion and suf­fered anx­i­ety at­tacks, the hear­ing was told.

On the morn­ing of his death he had bor­rowed his sis­ter’s Peu­geot to drive to the bridge.

Coroner Martin Flem­ing heard how Pc Michael Caulfield des­per­ately tried to talk Mr Ngenda down. In writ­ten ev­i­dence read to the court, he told how he did ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to stop him leap­ing and how he had recorded their con­ver­sa­tion on his body cam­era.

The of­fi­cer asked Mr Ngenda to tell his story and he spoke about the rape al­le­ga­tion, which was made on July 8.

Pc Caulfield re­called: “Some­one had made an al­le­ga­tion and it would be in the pa­pers. I said I would spend all day there if re­quired. He said he didn’t want to be ar­rested and in hand­cuffs.

“He told me to step back. At one time I man­aged to get him to smile. He didn’t come back over the bar­rier and at 7.40am, he let go and fell from my sight onto the car­riage­way. I was shocked at what had hap­pened and I com­posed my­self as best I could.”

Later Mr Ngenda’s par­ents watched their son’s fi­nal, har­row­ing con­ver­sa­tion with the of­fi­cer as recorded on his body cam­era.

A tran­script of the re­marks was then read to the court and it was de­scribed by Mr Flem­ing as ‘un­de­ni­ably the most distress­ing tran­script I have had to lis­ten to.’

Pc Caulfield told Mr Ngenda: “You have got me for as long as it takes. You will have a mate for life. If you want a cud­dle we will have a man cud­dle.”

When Mr Ngenda, who lived at his par­ents’ ad­dress in Idle, Brad­ford, told him not to worry, the of­fi­cer replied: “I do, it’s my job.”

A pathol­o­gist said he died from mul­ti­ple in­juries and death would have been in­stan­ta­neous.

The court heard an in­ter­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tion by Det Sgt Deb­o­rah Wood of GMP was car­ried out to see how the force had con­ducted it­self re­gard­ing the rape al­le­ga­tion and the re­lease of the press ap­peal. She found there was noth­ing amiss.

Coroner Mr Flem­ing said: “He was prop­erly risk-as­sessed and driven back to his home ad­dress. There was an in­ci­dent the next day and he was taken in by po­lice. He seemed a lit­tle bit un­der the weather.”

He said there had been a ‘wor­ry­ing ex­change of text mes­sages’ be­tween Mr Ngenda and two friends just be­fore his death which made clear ‘his in­ten­tion to end his life.’ “It’s clear that the crim­i­nal al­le­ga­tion against him was weigh­ing very heav­ily on his mind,” Mr Flem­ing added.

Record­ing a con­clu­sion of sui­cide, the coroner said the break­down of Mr Ngenda’s mar­riage, and sep­a­ra­tion from his chil­dren, had not helped. “It’s clear that these de­vel­op­ments were the cat­a­lyst to put him in a very dark place in­deed,” Mr Flem­ing said.

Mwi­tumwa Ngenda

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.