Pub landlord killed himself in jail cell before police could quiz him over death of webcam girl who died while choking herself online for his pleasure, inquest hears
Jerome Dangar (pictured), 45, was being investigated on suspicion of manslaughter over the death of part-time carer Hope Barden, 21, who died of auto-erotic asphyxiation after using a ligature on herself while Danger watched online and did nothing to alert the authorities
A pub landlord killed himself in his jail cell before police could quiz him over the death of a ‘webcam girl’ who died while choking herself for his pleasure, an inquest has heard.
Jerome Dangar, 45, was being investigated on suspicion of manslaughter over the death of part-time carer Hope Barden, 21, who died of auto-erotic asphyxiation after using a ligature on herself while Danger watched online and did nothing to alert the authorities.
But he managed to escape justice after stockpiling prescribed anxiety medication and taking an overdose in his cell at Dartmoor in April 2019, an inquest in Exeter, Devon, heard this week.
A Home Office pathologist confirmed the ‘snuff film’ fanatic died from a drug used to treat anxiety and depression.
It came after raids on his home found a stockpile of extremely disturbing pornography, including genital mutilation and torture – with a judge believing at least three people to have been genuinely killed in some of the sick footage.
Miss Barden died from asphyxiation at her digs in Burton, Staffordshire, in March 2018 – and Dangar watched live but did not call 999, her inquest was told.
The jury at Exeter’s Coroner Court this week heard how Dangar had been on remand at Exeter Jail before he was jailed in January 2019 at Truro Crown Court for 15 months and then transferred to Dartmoor prison.
He had admitted nine charges of possessing extreme pornography of acts that portrayed threatening a person’s life and endangering genitals.
Judge Simon Carr said the 47 images and videos included ‘the deliberate torture of people who are clearly alive at the beginning and seem to be dead at the end’.
Hope Barden, 23, (pictured), died from asphyxiation at her digs in Burton, Staffordshire, in March 2018 – and Dangar watched live but did not call 999, her inquest was told
Dangar paid £2,300 over three months to watch Miss Barden (pictured) and police later found abuse videos at his home
He told Dangar, who ran a pub in Tintagel, Cornwall, that ‘these offences are in my view the worst of their kind’.
The judge said a pathologist reviewed the videos and believed ‘at least three of the people being tortured were dead by the end’.
Prosecutor Philip Lee said the images showed a ‘pre occupation with strangulation, stabbing, torture, asphyxiation and death’.
The senior Devon coroner Philip Spinney told the jury that Dangar was transferred to Dartmoor Jail a few days after he was jailed at Truro Crown Court.
He was found dead in his bed the day before he was due to be re-interviewed by Staffordshire police about the manslaughter of Miss Barden.
The coroner said Dangar was prescribed medication for anxiety and had been allowed to keep the pills in his cell.
He had written letters talking about suicide – in which he told his parents he ‘did not have the bottle to hang himself’, the inquest heard.
Dr Deborah Cook, the Home Office pathologist, said Dangar had an extremely high level of Propranolol in his blood and urine.
The jury heard it was ‘rare’ for pills to be stockpiled in this way.
A letter found in his cell written by Dangar said he ‘felt ashamed’ and questioned if he was ‘Tintagel’s most hated’ resident.
He wrote that he was ‘totally innocent on that front (the manslaughter case) but was ‘going out of his mind here (in jail).’
Yesterday the Exeter jury recorded a suicide conclusion after an eight day long inquest at Exeter Coroner’s Court.
Hope Barden’s sister previously said she was pushing for greater protection for young women who work on webcams (Pictured: Hope Barden)
A coroner previously heard that Dangar was a depraved ‘snuff movie’ fan who left Hope (pictured) to die after watching her suffocate on a live sex webcam
Hope (left) died of asphyxiation, leading police to believe that she had killed herself until Lily (right) convinced them to investigate her clients
The jury said he died from a ‘lethal dose of prescribed medication in his cell at Dartmoor jail’.
At Miss Barden’s inquest, a conclusion of unlawful killing was recorded.
A coroner there heard that Dangar was a depraved ‘snuff movie’ fan who left her to die after watching her suffocate on a live sex webcam.
It was said she was paid to perform ‘degrading and dangerous’ acts by Dangar after he met her on an adult website where she was earning money to top up her wages as a carer.
Dangar paid £2,300 over three months to watch her and police later found abuse videos at his home.
Her sister Lily Bardem, 32, revealed in 2019 that police thought the 21-year-old had taken her own life until she pushed for them to investigate further.
She said she put police onto Dangar’s messages after they initially thought that her sister had hanged herself.
Miss Barden told Mirror Online that she was pushing for greater protection for young women who work on webcams.
‘We were told that it was suicide but I knew she hadn’t hung herself,’ she said. ‘I had been talking to her that day. I knew she wasn’t depressed. She loved living with her flatmate, she was really happy.’