An ex BU student has died after a police chase whilst struggling with crystal meth addiction
He had been battling drug issues for years
An ex Bournemouth University student died after jumping in front of an oncoming train whilst being chased by police, an inquest has heard.
Luke Howes, who studied Technology at BU, struggled with a crystal meth addiction throughout his time as a student, and came back home in 2013 during his struggle.
Luke, 21, originally used cannabis but progressed to ecstasy and ultimately crystal meth when he was at BU. He wasn’t able to come back to uni after paranoia stood in his way.
Just the day before Luke’s death, two psychiatric nurses told him he needed urgent help, in the form of inpatient psychiatric treatment. This followed an attempt on his own life three days before his death.
Lydia Howes, Luke’s mum, became concerned about her son when he came home after admitting his battle, at one stage calling the police due to her worry.
She was concerned that if he was put in hospital, he wouldn’t respond in a way that would help him.
“He needed to be watched by security 24/7 because he would abscond from hospital,” she said at the inquest.
“I don’t know if anyone here knows what it is like to take a psychotic person to hospital but it is very difficult.”
From Sunningdale, Luke began using drugs when he was 16, with his drug use becoming more severe as he got older.
He told his parents about his problem whilst at uni, but his problems did not disappear after coming home to get better.
At one point, Luke was taken in for some treatment after an incident, which was provided to help his mental state at the time. He had also been diagnosed with a variety of mental disorders as a result of his use.
He was eventually discharged after this, and when he came home his mum was so worried about her son she resulted in calling the police.
It was then that Luke escaped from the officers by jumping out of a window, then towards a train, where the incident took place on November 11th.
An inquest held in Reading has allowed Luke’s parents to ask doctors why they released him when they did, demanding answers.
The coroner has said the inquest will focus on two main aspects: how he was assessed at Frimley Park Hospital and the conversations his mother had with doctors when she asked for him not to be discharged, the second issue was the events leading to his death after he was discharged.
The university has declined to comment on the matter.