High court to grant landmark inquest into nurse death mystery
(Originally published by the Big Issue in the North)
The family of a 41-year-old nurse from Stockport who died in 2005 are to be granted a fresh inquest following their investigation into the strange circumstances surrounding her death and relationship with the former head of ethics of the British Medical Association (BMA).
|Carole Myers was found dead in 2005|
After an original inquest into the death of Carole Myers returned an open verdict, the Felstead family obtained her psychiatric and medical records which revealed she had undergone “recovered memory” therapy sessions on the NHS from the age of 21.
During these sessions she was given psychotropic drugs and was encouraged to believe she had been abused by her parents who she alleged were serial murderers and members of a satanic cult.
Her new memories also included claims that she had been abused by two members of the Tory cabinet at the Conservative party headquarters.
Although these allegations were later shown to be false, their accuracy was never questioned by therapists. Ms Myers was diagnosed as a victim of satanic abuse and received intense psychiatric and medical treatment over a period of 20 years prior to her death.
The Family’s application for a new inquest centres on revelations about Carol’s relationship with Dr Fleur Fisher, the former head of ethics at the BMA. Records show that in 1986 Ms Myers attended “psychosexual counselling” sessions with Dr Fisher who continued to play an active role in her psychiatric treatment throughout her life.
Evidence has also come to light causing concern over Dr Fisher’s behaviour after Ms Myers’ death.
On 29th June 2005 the Metropolitan police received an emergency call from Dr Fisher who was travelling on a train approximately 200 miles from Ms Myers’ flat. Dr Fisher told police that she believed the nurse may have taken a drug overdose.
Although she was not named in Ms Myers’ will and had no power of attorney to represent her, Dr Fisher subsequently claimed to be her “next of kin” and attempted to arrange her cremation. The funeral arrangements were only cancelled after Ms Myers’ family were contacted by the Coroners’ office a day before it was due to take place.
Dr Fisher disposed of all Ms Myers’ possessions in her London flat and insured herself on her car. In an audio recording recovered from an insurance company she can be heard taking out a policy and claiming Ms Myers was her “unofficial daughter.”
None of this evidence was included at the original inquest and Dr Fisher was never called to testify.
In March the Felstead family were given rare permission by the Solicitor General to apply to the high Court to seek a new inquest. Following the decision a coroner in Westminster agreed to hold a fresh inquest.
The case has now been placed on the Warned List at the High Court where judges are expected to set a date for a fresh inquest which will be held in London.
Ms Myers' family believe a new inquest will provide them with answers to questions they have long been seeking.
Ms Myers’ brother Kevin Felstead, who co-authored a self-published a book on the case titled ‘Justice for Carol: The True Story of Carol Felstead’ said:
“First and foremost we want Dr Fisher to appear at the inquest like she should have at the original one. What’s also got to happen at this inquest is the whole sorry tale of Carol’s treatment needs to be exposed.
She had two decades of psychiatric treatment to recover memories of things that never happened. It all needs to come out.”
Ms Myers' father Joseph Felstead said:
“I don’t know whether we can get full justice for Carol. We can’t undo the past – all the psychiatric treatment can’t be undone.”
“We want a truthful, factual narrative as to how Carol died. The last inquest certainly didn’t provide it…We’re hopeful that the new inquest will tell us things that we didn’t know before.”