Family of Aberdeen student launches legal bid to sue her ex-boyfriend over her death

Emily Drouet took her own life in 2016 after a campaign of abuse

The family of an Aberdeen student have launched a landmark legal bid against her ex-boyfriend following her death.

Emily Drouet, 18, took her own life in 2016 after being abused by her boyfriend, Angus Milligan. Milligan received 180 hours of community service and 12 months’ supervision after admitting to assaulting and abusing Emily, Mail Online reports.

Her family have since launched a civil case against Milligan under the “loss of society” law, used to claim compensation over the death of a close relative resulting from negligence.

The case called at the Court of Session on May 30th, with Fiona Drouet, Emily’s mother, listed as one party in the case, and Milligan listed as the other. A judge has not yet decided whether a three-year time bar applies to the case before it can proceed further.

Fiona told the Press and Journal: “If successful it would be a landmark case in hopefully ensuring suicides that follow domestic abuse are investigated and the perpetrator held responsible”.

Emily enrolled onto a law degree at Aberdeen University in September 2015, where she met Milligan and began dating a month later. He later sent abusive texts and assaulted Emily during their relationship.

Eight days after Milligan appeared at her apartment, she was found dead, having taken her own life.

Emily’s parents said they missed warning signs hinting their daughter was suffering early into the relationship and said she avoided eye contact when she returned home, accredited to Milligan’s emotional abuse.

Milligan appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court in May 2017 and has since been expelled from Aberdeen University, but was later given a place at Oxford Brooks University.

In 2019, Ms Drouet launched a substantial damages claim to show that her daughter “isn’t responsible for her death”. She said the campaign isn’t about the money and told The Sun: “We want to get justice for her as we feel we didn’t get it through the criminal courts.”

If you or someone you know has been affected by this story, please speak to someone or contact Samaritans on 116 123 at any time. You can also contact Anxiety UK on 03444 775 774, Mind on 0300 123 3393, and Calm (Campaign against living miserably) on 0800 58 58 58. 

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