Moment Raoul Moat shot himself with shotgun is recreated for ITV drama

Moment Raoul Moat blasted himself in the head with sawn-off shotgun is recreated for ITV drama: Actor is filmed kneeling on the grass with weapon in scenes showing the killer’s final hours before he took his own life

  • Spurned former bouncer Raoul Moat went on a deadly rampage with a shotgun in north-east England in 2010
  • He shot his former partner Samantha Stobbart, killed her new lover Chris Brown and blinded a policeman
  • Moat evaded capture for a week but took his own life after a dramatic six-hour standoff with armed officers
  • The extraordinary manhunt is now being dramatised for a new ITV series starring Misfits actor Matt Stokoe 
  • The moment crazed gunman Raoul Moat blasted himself in the head with a sawn-off shotgun has been recreated for a new ITV drama.

    Actor Matt Stokoe, 33, was last night filmed kneeling on the grass with the weapon under his chin in chilling scenes showing the killer’s final hours before he took his own life. 

    Stokoe was seen on his knees, holding a sawn off shotgun to his chin, while armed officers surrounded him, repeatedly asking him to drop his weapon. 

    The actor was then seen lifting the gun up to the side of his head and pulling the trigger before collapsing on the floor. The scenes, filmed after dark, were eerily similar to the real life ending of the huge manhunt for Moat in 2010. 

    Spurned former bouncer Moat, 37, had just been released from Durham Prison following an 18-week sentence for assault when he began his vindictive campaign of murder early on July 3 that year – first by killing ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart’s karate instructor lover Chris Brown, then shooting her in the stomach through a house window in Birtley, Gateshead.

    He then declared war on police while on the run for murder and attempted murder, and blasted PC David Rathband in the face when he found the officer parked up in a patrol car on a roundabout in Newcastle. Rathband was blinded in the senseless attack and went on to take his own life in February 2012 because he couldn’t cope with his disability, a coroner ruled.

    Moat took refuge with a pair of accomplices in Rothbury, Northumberland, but his actions triggered one of the nation’s most notorious manhunts.

    Armed police were drafted in from around the country, survival expert Ray Mears was brought in to advise on where Moat could be fleeing, and RAF jets with heat-seeking cameras were deployed to canvas the north east of England in search for the killer.

    The thug was eventually cornered by armed police before a six-hour stand-off began – during which footballer Paul Gascoigne famously turned up at the site of the police stand-off with a fishing rod and chicken dinner to try and talk ‘Moaty’ round. As negotiators tried to get Moat to put down his weapon, the crazed killer shot himself in the head.

    Stokoe, famous for roles in the Channel 4 series Misfits, the BBC series Bodyguard and Sky’s Jamestown, has assumed the lead role of Moat, while Sally Messham (Doc Martin) and Josef Davies (Chernobyl) will play Moat’s ex-lover Stobbart and murder victim Brown.

    Actor Matt Stokoe, 33, was last night filmed kneeling on the grass with the weapon under his chin in chilling scenes showing the killer's final hours before he took his own life

    Actor Matt Stokoe, 33, was last night filmed kneeling on the grass with the weapon under his chin in chilling scenes showing the killer’s final hours before he took his own life

    ITV re-create the chilling moment Raoul Moat puts a gun to his head and pulls the trigger during a tense showdown with police for a new true crime drama

    ITV re-create the chilling moment Raoul Moat puts a gun to his head and pulls the trigger during a tense showdown with police for a new true crime drama

    Matt Stokoe, who plays gunman Moat, was spotted filming the disturbing scenes for new ITV drama 'The Hunt For Raoul Moat' in Yorkshire

    Matt Stokoe, who plays gunman Moat, was spotted filming the disturbing scenes for new ITV drama ‘The Hunt For Raoul Moat’ in Yorkshire

    Stokoe was seen on his knees, holding a sawn off shotgun to his chin, while armed officers repeatedly ask him to drop his weapon

    Stokoe was seen on his knees, holding a sawn off shotgun to his chin, while armed officers repeatedly ask him to drop his weapon

    The actor was then seen lifting the gun up to the side of his head and pulling the trigger before collapsing on the floor

    The actor was then seen lifting the gun up to the side of his head and pulling the trigger before collapsing on the floor

    The scenes, filmed after dark, were eerily similar to the real life ending of the huge manhunt for Moat in 2010

    The scenes, filmed after dark, were eerily similar to the real life ending of the huge manhunt for Moat in 2010

    Stokoe, famous for roles in the Channel 4 series Misfits, the BBC series Bodyguard and Sky's Jamestown, has assumed the lead role of Moat

    Stokoe, famous for roles in the Channel 4 series Misfits, the BBC series Bodyguard and Sky’s Jamestown, has assumed the lead role of Moat

    The series has been titled 'The Hunt for Raoul Moat', though a release date is yet to be confirmed

    The series has been titled ‘The Hunt for Raoul Moat’, though a release date is yet to be confirmed

    Moat took refuge with a pair of accomplices in Rothbury, Northumberland, but his actions triggered one of the nation's most notorious manhunts. Pictured: Stokoe in the recreation

    Moat took refuge with a pair of accomplices in Rothbury, Northumberland, but his actions triggered one of the nation’s most notorious manhunts. Pictured: Stokoe in the recreation 

    Video grab shows murderer Raoul Moat lying on the riverbank in Rothbury with a shotgun point to his head

    Video grab shows murderer Raoul Moat lying on the riverbank in Rothbury with a shotgun point to his head

    Fugutive gunman Raoul Moat as he is confronted by police following the dramatic stand-off in 2010

    Fugutive gunman Raoul Moat as he is confronted by police following the dramatic stand-off in 2010

    Police officers negotiate with fugitive Raoul Moat shortly before his death in Rothbury, West Yorkshire

    Police officers negotiate with fugitive Raoul Moat shortly before his death in Rothbury, West Yorkshire

    Armed police shields and equipment lies at the scene of fugitive Raoul Moat's suicide in Rothbury, Northumbria

    Armed police shields and equipment lies at the scene of fugitive Raoul Moat’s suicide in Rothbury, Northumbria

    The remains of the camp fire where police found the tent of armed fugitive Raoul Moat in the village of Rothbury

    The remains of the camp fire where police found the tent of armed fugitive Raoul Moat in the village of Rothbury

    Raoul Moat’s horrific final days before dramatic six-hour stand off 

    Thursday, July 1, 2010: Released from Durham prison after serving a short time for assault

    Saturday, July 3, 2010: Moat shoots dead Chris Brown, who is the new partner of his ex girlfriend Samantha Stobbart, who he also tried to shoot twice through the window of a property

    Sunday, July 4, 2010: Moat shoots PC David Rathband and the public are urged not to approach him

    Monday, July 5, 2010: Cleveland, Humberside, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and Cumbria Police join up with Northumberland Police to help them with the search for Moat

    Tuesday, July 6, 2010: Moat declares war on the police. Police also investigate an armed robbery from the day before as the description matches Moat’s

    Wednesday, July 7, 2010: Police offer £10,000 reward for information leading to his capture

    Thursday, July 8, 2010: Police urge public to be vigilant as they release new images of Moat

    Friday, July 9, 2010: Moat located in Rothbury with witnesses saying he is on the floor with a gun to his head near the riverbank

    Saturday, July 10, 2010: Moat shoots himself after a six-hour stand off with police

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    The drama will also star The A Word’s Lee Ingleby as Northumbria Police Officer Neil Adamson, who was among the main police officers searching for Moat while he evaded capture. 

    Sonya Cassidy (The Last Kingdom) and Vineeta Rishi (Holby City) have also been announced as cast members. It is not clear if Gascoigne will feature in the show. 

    The series has been titled ‘The Hunt for Raoul Moat’, though a release date is yet to be confirmed. 

    Born in 1973, Moat was bought up by his grandmother in Newcastle’s deprived West End – just a few doors down from his parents, Josephine and stepfather Brian Healey.

    Moat was widely regarded as a man with an explosive temper; a muscle-bound bodybuilder addicted to steroids and anti-depressants who could flip at a moment’s notice. 

    Samantha told Newcastle Crown Court in 2011 after the shooting spree that Moat had a ‘Jekyll and Hyde split personality’, and was prone towards violent behaviour.

    At the time of his death Moat had been on the run for a week after being released from Durham prison following an 18-week sentence for assault.

    Just two days after his release the 37-year-old shot dead Chris Brown and wounded his ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart on July 3. 

    Just hours later he left PC David Rathband blind, he took his own life two years later.

    Just days before the stand off with police, officers released new images of Moat and urged the public to stay away from him. Pictures were also released by police showing the equipment Moat was using to hide in his woodland lair.

    On Friday 9 July officers located three of Moat’s mobile phones. One, used to make the two 999 calls to police before and after PC David Rathband was shot. Moat was later cornered into a riverbank and had a shot gun to his head.

    Moat’s friend Tony Laidler was escorted into the police cordon and food and water items were also bought in as the stand off continued.

    ‘He had a Jekyll and Hyde split personality’: What Samantha Stobbart told a 2011 court after Moat’s deadly rampage 

    Raoul Moat's ex girlfriend Samantha Stobbart arriving at Newcastle Crown Court in March 2011

    Raoul Moat’s ex girlfriend Samantha Stobbart arriving at Newcastle Crown Court in March 2011

    Moat’s ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart told a court in 2011 that the crazed gunman ‘had a Jekyll and Hyde split personality’ as she told of the horrifying moment the killer attacked her and her lover. 

    Moat had just shot her karate instructor boyfriend Chris Brown in the neck and chest before ‘calmly executing’ him with a final shot to the head, a trial heard.

    Miss Stobbart wept as she told a jury at Newcastle Crown Court how Moat ‘just appeared’ and started shooting on July 3 last year.

    She said the killer had a ‘Jekyll and Hyde split personality’ and could be violent and unpredictable.

    Miss Stobbart said: ‘Chris went down to the grass and I followed him. I remember Raoul was shouting. I don’t know what. Shouting. He pointed the gun at my legs and I ran into the house.

    ‘I could not see anybody. I was panicking because my daughter was upstairs and I was running about the house looking for the keys and I did not know what they looked like.

    ‘I heard two shots. When I looked out the window it was done. I didn’t see Raoul come towards the house, I was concentrating on Chris. I just heard shouting and before I knew it I got shot.’

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    In the early hours of Saturday morning a gunshot was heard, Moat shot himself and no shots were fired by police. He was taken to hospital for treatment but died just hours later.

    In a bizarre twist to the police stand-off with the killer in Rothbury, which was widely reported at the time, former England footballer Paul Gascoigne showed up to try to talk Moat down.

    Speaking in the years following the manhunt, Gascoigne told the Mirror: ‘I thought that I could take Raoul Moat fishing because he was near a river. I told the taxi driver ‘head for the airport’ and then when we got to Newcastle airport I said ‘head for Rothbury’.

    ‘The taxi driver said ‘you are not going where I think you are going?’ And I said ‘yes I am’.’

    He said he went on to tell the taxi driver that he could ‘save Moat’ because he had been through so much himself during his struggles with addiction and alcoholism. 

    When Gascoigne got out of the taxi he said he headed straight for the field where Moat was surrounded by police.

    He asked police ‘where’s Moaty’, and one officer asked if he knew him personally, to which Gascoigne denied. He said rumours then started to circulate as to how he knew Moat with some saying they had been friends.

    They had never met, but as the situation around Moat intensified, Gascoigne found himself on TV screens and linked with the chain of events ever since.

    In the years since, several members of Moat’s family have expressed the pain they still feel as a result of their son’s actions and the abuse they are subject to.

    Moat’s ex-girlfriend Samantha was rushed to Queen Elizabeth hospital in Gateshead, where she was left fighting for her life, after she was shot.

    On July 5, Samantha was declared to no longer be in a critical condition following the attack, and left hospital on July 17. 

    That same day she issued a direct appeal to Moat, who had gone on the run, and said: ‘Please give yourself up. If you still loved me and our baby you would not be doing this.’

    Miss Stobbart told a court in 2011 that the crazed gunman ‘had a Jekyll and Hyde split personality’ as she told of the horrifying moment the killer attacked her and her lover. 

    Moat had just shot her karate instructor boyfriend Chris Brown in the neck and chest before ‘calmly executing’ him with a final shot to the head, a trial heard.

    Miss Stobbart wept as she told a jury at Newcastle Crown Court how Moat ‘just appeared’ and started shooting on July 3 last year.

    ‘Chris went down to the grass and I followed him. I remember Raoul was shouting. I don’t know what. Shouting. He pointed the gun at my legs and I ran into the house,’ she said.

    ‘I could not see anybody. I was panicking because my daughter was upstairs and I was running about the house looking for the keys and I did not know what they looked like.

    Moat was widely regarded as a man with an explosive temper; a muscle-bound bodybuilder addicted to steroids and anti-depressants who could flip at a moment's notice

    Moat was widely regarded as a man with an explosive temper; a muscle-bound bodybuilder addicted to steroids and anti-depressants who could flip at a moment’s notice 

    Samantha Stobbart sustained severe injuries after being shot in the stomach by her former lover

    Sally Messham has signed on to play Moat's ex-lover Samantha Stobbart

    Sally Messham, pictured right, has signed on to play Moat’s ex-lover Samantha Stobbart, who sustained severe injuries after being shot in the stomach by the crazed gunman

    Pictured left to right: Stepfather Brian Healey, mother Josephine Healey, Raoul Moat, aged 13, and brother Angus Moat on Josephine Moat and Brian Healey's wedding day in 1986

    Pictured left to right: Stepfather Brian Healey, mother Josephine Healey, Raoul Moat, aged 13, and brother Angus Moat on Josephine Moat and Brian Healey’s wedding day in 1986

    Moat's daughter Katelaine Fitzpatrick (pictured in 2010 with her mother), said in 2020: 'I'm so sorry to the people he has hurt'

    Moat’s daughter Katelaine Fitzpatrick (pictured in 2010 with her mother), said in 2020: ‘I’m so sorry to the people he has hurt’

    What WAS Gazza doing at the standoff? 

    Paul Gascoigne arriving in Rothbury, Northumberland to 'talk Raoul Moat around'

    Paul Gascoigne arriving in Rothbury, Northumberland to ‘talk Raoul Moat around’

    In a bizarre twist to the police stand-off with the killer in Rothbury, which was widely reported at the time, former England footballer Paul Gascoigne showed up to try to talk Moat down.

    Speaking in the years following the manhunt, Gascoigne told the Mirror: ‘I thought that I could take Raoul Moat fishing because he was near a river. I told the taxi driver ‘head for the airport’ and then when we got to Newcastle airport I said ‘head for Rothbury’.

    ‘The taxi driver said ‘you are not going where I think you are going?’ And I said ‘yes I am’.’

    He said he went on to tell the taxi driver that he could ‘save Moat’ because he had been through so much himself during his struggles with addiction and alcoholism. When Gascoigne got out of the taxi he said he headed straight for the field where Moat was surrounded by police.

    He asked police ‘where’s Moaty’, and one officer asked if he knew him personally, to which Gascoigne denied. He said rumours then started to circulate as to how he knew Moat with some saying they had been friends.

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    ‘I heard two shots. When I looked out the window it was done. I didn’t see Raoul come towards the house, I was concentrating on Chris. I just heard shouting and before I knew it I got shot.’

    She later told the News of The World of the terrifying moment that Moat appeared at the window and started to shoot. 

    ‘There was nothing I could do against a madman with a gun,’ she said.

    ‘I had to get back to the house to make sure my baby daughter Chanel was safe. I saw the sparks flying off Raoul’s gun as he shot me.

    ‘Then I was on the floor with blood pumping out everywhere.’ She added that ‘there was no emotion’ in Moat’s eyes as he carried out the attack.

    Speaking out for the first time in 2020 – a decade on from her father’s killing spree –  Katelaine Fitzpatrick told The Mirror about her lasting feelings of shame, disgust and abandonment.

    ‘I’m so sorry to the people he has hurt. If I had the chance to meet the victims and their families and say I’m so sorry for what my dad did, and show that I care, I would,’ Katelaine, who was 11 at the time of her father’s rampage, said. 

    ‘Being his flesh and blood sickens me at times, it’s hard to believe who I am. I can’t believe I come from that man. 

    ‘I’m so glad I didn’t know him, and that I became the person I am today despite all I have been through,’ Katelaine added. 

    Moat had always turned down opportunities to meet his daughter and had never spoken to her prior to the attacks. 

    Katelaine also said she became a victim during her school years as a result of other children bullying her with cruel taunts because of Moat’s actions.

    Just months prior to Katelaine’s first-ever interview, Moat’s mother Josephine Healey gave her first statement to the press.

    ‘He is not my son,’ Healey told the Mirror in April 2020.

    She added that the incident still caused ‘a lot of trouble for me’ and said abusive messages are posted through her letterbox to this day. 

    At the time of Moat’s standoff with officers, when he threatened to kill any policeman who crossed his path, Mrs Healey spoke at length about her son’s dramatic change. 

    She said her gentle son disappeared at the age of 19, replaced by a snarling man who hated everything – and everyone. 

    He returned to her home after a lengthy absence in 2007 and, standing on the doorstep, made a gun gesture with his fingers before threatening to kill her.

    ‘Why would he do that?’ she asked on the penultimate day of Moat’s standoff. ‘It was like he was not my real son.’ 

    ‘He now has a totally different character, attitude and manner,’ she added.  ‘Every last detail.’ 

     

    ‘We as a family do not need any other reminders’: Brother of David Rathband who killed himself after being blinded by Raoul Moat slams new ITV drama on hunt for the gunman

    The twin brother of policeman David Rathband, who was shot and blinded by killer Raoul Moat, said he will not watch a new drama about the gunman.

    Darren Rathband, 54, has urged people to remember the victims of Moat’s deadly attack in July, 2010, instead of focusing on the killer.

    He said he will not be watching ITV‘s upcoming series, The Hunt for Raoul Moat, based on the substantial search for the 37-year-old.

    The broadcaster confirmed last week that it has started filming the programme. 

    Mr Rathband, 54, said his family do not need any more reminders of what happened to his twin brother.

    ‘David loss gives us a painful reminder everyday. If it’s based on facts and not fiction, the story remains the same,’ he told ChroniceLive

    ‘I don’t watch them, don’t need to and never will. I sadly lived being involved in it.’ 

    PC David Rathband (left) with his twin brother Darren, after being shot in the face twice by Raoul Moat. He was left blinded by the attack

    PC David Rathband (left) with his twin brother Darren, after being shot in the face twice by Raoul Moat. He was left blinded by the attack

    Police officer David Rathband (left) was shot and blinded by Raoul Moat, 37, less than 24 hours after he shot his ex-girlfriend and her new partner

    Darren Rathband, 54, whose twin brother was shot and blinded by Raoul Moat, said he will not watch the new ITV drama being filmed about the case. Pictured with his sister Debbie after the death of their brother

    Police officer David Rathband (left) was shot and blinded by Raoul Moat, 37, less than 24 hours after he shot his ex-girlfriend and her new partner. Darren Rathband, 54, his twin brother, said he will not watch the new ITV drama being filmed about the case

    PC Rathband took his life on February 29, 2012, after his 20-year marriage ended the year before. Pictured, his funeral in Stafford

    PC Rathband took his life on February 29, 2012, after his 20-year marriage ended the year before. Pictured, his funeral in Stafford

    PC Rathband, 42, was sat in his police car on a roundabout above the A1 in Newcastle when he was shot in the face twice by Moat.

    It happened less than 24 hours after Moat injured his ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart with a shotgun and killed her new partner Christopher Brown with it.

    Afterwards, Moat took refuge with a pair of accomplices in Rothbury, Northumberland.

    Armed police were drafted in from around the country to find him, in one of the nation’s most notorious manhunts.

    He was eventually cornered by armed police before a six-hour stand-off began. As negotiators tried to get Moat to put down his weapon, the crazed killer shot himself in the head. 

    Pictured: Raoul Moat, who was 37 at the time of a shooting spree across Tyne-and-Wear and Northumbria in 2010, in his mugshot photo from a previous conviction

    Stokoe, famous for roles in the Channel 4 series Misfits, the BBC series Bodyguard and Sky's Jamestown, is assuming the lead role of Moat

    Left, Raoul Moat, who was 37 at the time of a shooting spree in 2010. Right, Matt Stokoe, who will play him in a new drama

    Raoul Moat holds a shotgun to his head after being confronted by armed police in Rothbury

    Raoul Moat holds a shotgun to his head after being confronted by armed police in Rothbury

    Sitting on the grass with a sawn-off shotgun, actor Matt Stokoe, 33, was pictured last week playing the killer Raoul Moat in his final moments before he took his own life

    Sitting on the grass with a sawn-off shotgun, actor Matt Stokoe, 33, was pictured last week playing the killer Raoul Moat in his final moments before he took his own life

    The ITV drama, which will tell the story of one of the most notorious manhunts in the UK, filmed the gripping scenes in Yorkshire with Stokoe in the lead role. Actors posing as police officers are pictured during filming this week

    The ITV drama, which will tell the story of one of the most notorious manhunts in the UK, filmed the gripping scenes in Yorkshire with Stokoe in the lead role. Actors posing as police officers are pictured during filming this week

    Police pictured in July 2010, during their confrontation with fugitive Raoul Moat

    Police pictured in July 2010, during their confrontation with fugitive Raoul Moat

    PC Rathband survived the attack by lying in his blood and pretending to be dead, before calling for help from the force on his radio. 

    He healed from some of his injuries but was left blind. He returned to work and set up a charity for injured emergency service staff.

    He also wrote an autobiography and won a Daily Mirror Pride of Britain award for his bravery.

    The officer took his life on February 29, 2012, after his 20-year marriage ended the year before, when his wife found out he was having an affair with a 7/7 bombing survivor.

    Mr Rathband hopes that anyone viewing the ITV drama will think of Moat as a ‘coward’, and remember his victims.

    ‘Victims of crime are often forgotten by the names of the cowards that carry out despicable acts of violence towards others,’ he said. 

    ‘This event and actions by a coward are no different. 

    ‘The public should remember the names of those effected by violence, those who are no longer here to be heard, instead of the names of those who commit these heinous crimes.’

    A spokesperson for ITV said that The Hunt for Raoul Moat also focuses on the three victims, Ms Stobbart, Mr Brown and PC Rathband. 

    Scriptwriter Kevin Sampson said he hopes the drama condemns a narrative of victim-blaming when it comes to violence against women.

    He added that televised coverage of the manhunt in 2010 ‘gripped’ him, and he was interested when Moat was portrayed as a ‘legend’ by some — despite his ‘brutality’.

    Simon Heath and Jake Lushington, commenting on on behalf of producers World Productions, said that Mr Sampson has written a ‘compelling and unflinching’ account of the events.

    They said the programme highlights ‘the human tragedy behind the lurid headlines’, adding: ‘The drama is a timely reminder of how social media and fake news can create a dangerous myth, in this case that Raoul Moat was any kind of hero.’

    Lee Ingleby is pictured filming the scene of the notorious standoff from 2010 for the ITV drama

    Lee Ingleby is pictured filming the scene of the notorious standoff from 2010 for the ITV drama

    Stokoe is pictured behind the scenes of a new ITV drama about the horrific shooting spree in 2010

    Stokoe is pictured behind the scenes of a new ITV drama about the horrific shooting spree in 2010

    Stokoe, famous for roles in the Channel 4 series Misfits, the BBC series Bodyguard and Sky’s Jamestown, has assumed the lead role of Moat, while Sally Messham (Doc Martin) and Josef Davies (Chernobyl) will play Moat’s ex-lover Stobbart and murder victim Brown. 

    The drama will also star The A Word’s Lee Ingleby as Northumbria Police Officer Neil Adamson, who was among the main police officers searching for Moat while he evaded capture. 

    Sonya Cassidy (The Last Kingdom) and Vineeta Rishi (Holby City) have also been announced as cast members.

    Tragic officer David Rathband hanged himself after he was blinded by Moat because he couldn’t cope with his new disability, coroner ruled 

    David Rathband outside court in June 27, 2011

    Blinded police officer David Rathband outside Newcastle Magistrates’ Court in June 27, 2011

    PC David Rathband hanged himself after he was blinded by Moat because he couldn’t cope with his new disability and a breakdown in his marriage, a coroner ruled.

    Mr Rathband was found at his home in Blyth, Northumberland, in February 2012, after he was shot in the face by crazed gunman Moat in July 2010.

    The officer had moved out of the marital home in August 2011 after his wife found out he was having an affair with 7/7 London bombing survivor Lisa French. 

    He became a national hero and used his profile to set up the Blue Lamp Foundation to support 999 staff injured at work. However, the inquest heard Mr Rathband, 44, had made threats to kill himself and told Miss French he had attempted to hang himself but could not go through with it.

    On the night Mr Rathband took his own life, his estranged wife Kath visited him for the last time. She said she thought he looked ‘awful’ and decided he needed support. But she felt she was not the right person to be with him and contacted his sister Debbie Essery and his welfare officer.

    Concluding that Rathband took his own life, Coroner Eric Armstrong said: ‘The circumstances of his injuries [inflicted by Moat] are well known. It is difficult, if not impossible, not to view the infliction of those injuries as the first step in a series which culminated in his death.

    ‘Many people may look back, police officers and others, and with the benefit of hindsight, form the view that they wish they could have done something else. Could I implore them not to carry that out? Decisions were taken which at the time seemed appropriate and were justified at the time.’ 

    In a statement read after the hearing by lawyer Philip Davison, Kath thanked family and friends for their ‘unwavering’ support. She said: ‘David fought so hard to come to terms with the devastating injuries that resulted from the shooting and the effect it had on us all as a family.

    ‘Whilst I have lost David, he has left me with two amazing children and he would be immensely proud of them and what they have achieved, as I am.’

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