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Peter Barnes inquest: jury hears 999 call from nurse
A nurse told a 999 operator that a missing psychiatric patient was probably sitting somewhere with a couple of lagers because nine out of ten times that is what they do, an inquest heard today.
Donna Bingley, a senior nurse at the privately-run Cygnet Hospital in Wyke, was giving evidence today at the inquest into the death of 31-year-old Peter Barnes, who disappeared on a 30-minute unsupervised cigarette break on October 13, 2011.
Mr Barnes was found hanged in the hospital grounds a week later. A post-mortem examination has revealed he was likely to have died only a few hours after he went missing.
The jury yesterday heard the 999 call in which the nurse told the operator Mr Barnes had a long-history of violent behaviour when unwell and he could be of risk to others when his medication wore off.
But she made no mention of potential self-harm – although she did say he had been getting a bit anxious lately.
Miss Bingley told the inquest: “I wasn’t demanding they get the helicopters out. I was just following procedure to report it to the police.”
The jury heard when the operator asked her: “So is there any genuine concern at all?” she had replied: “I think really he will just have gone off and have a couple of cans of Stella or make his way home to Lincoln, but I think he will be sat somewhere with a couple of cans of Stella”, adding “Usually they go up to the Co-op”.
She continued that nine out of ten times patients going missing would buy beer and sit in the park.
The operator then marked the report as standard saying she would escalate it as time went on.
The hearing continues.