Man shot himself in West Norfolk hotel car park, inquest told

Court news from the Lynn News,, @lynnnewscitizen on Twitter
Court news from the Lynn News,, @lynnnewscitizen on Twitter
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A man who died in the grounds of a West Norfolk hotel shot himself while he was under police arrest, an inquest has heard.

On Tuesday afternoon, a jury in Norwich concluded that Stewart Page, who was 60, took his own life.

Mr Page, who was from Cuxwold, near Caistor, Lincolnshire, died from head injuries sustained in an incident at the Briarfields Hotel, Titchwell, on the afternoon of November 11, 2012.

The court heard he had been arrested in the moments before he died on suspicion of card fraud after admitting withdrawing thousands of pounds on credit cards in his former wife’s name.

A police officer had cleared items from a car Mr Page had been using and turned to see him with a “long-barrelled weapon” against his head. His fingers were also around the trigger.

Although the officer shouted at Mr Page to stop and attempted to kick the weapon away, a single shot was fired.

Mr Page, who the court heard had earlier told officers he did not wish to harm himself, was pronounced dead at the scene.

However, the jury concluded that Mr Page died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound while the balance of his mind was disturbed. They also found the fact Mr Page had a firearm was not communicated.

Concerns for Mr Page’s safety had first been raised by staff at the Hoste Arms in Burnham Market, where he had been staying, on the night before he died.

A police community support officer (PCSO) then tracked him down after spotting his car at Briarfields.

The jury also heard that inquiries revealed Mr Page had been detained by Lincolnshire Police officers several weeks earlier.

As previously reported, the case was initially referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission because of the contact between officers and Mr Page.

However, the IPCC sent the file back to Norfolk Police a few days later.