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Inquest: Businesswoman did not rationally decide to end life
A BUSINESSWOMAN who was found hanged from a 10th floor balcony in Turkey could not have rationally decided to take her own life, an inquest heard.
37-year-old Katharina Turner, originally from Penn, was found dead last October at the shared apartment in Istanbul where she lived while working for a major global energy company.
Buckinghamshire Coroner Richard Hulett ruled despite leaving a suicide note, the high level of alcohol in her system meant she would not have been thinking clearly enough to make the decision to end her life.
Miss Turner moved to London for a career in banking before being headhunted to work in Turkey as the personal assistant to the CEO of gas giant Habboush two years before she died.
Her father Chris Turner said he had seen her two weeks beforehand when she visited London and that she seemed content, talking about buying property in Istanbul.
Mr Turner added it had been “a total shock” to learn of her death, as friends and family all reported she had seemed to be “in a good place”
Turkish authorities were alerted and had to break into her apartment on October 7 2012 but Miss Turner could not be revived.
A toxicology report performed in Turkey revealed she had a blood alcohol level of 417mg, more than five times the UK drink drive limit, as well as anti-depressant drugs and paracetamol.
Miss Turner’s body was repatriated to the UK and a further post-mortem carried out.
Coroner Mr Hulett said given the high alcohol level, enough to be fatal in other cases, he could not give a verdict that Miss Turner’s took her own life.
He also claimed the lack of evidence from the Turkish authorities surrounding the circumstances of her death made it difficult to know exactly what happened.
He said: "I am reluctant to record the death as a suicide. I have seen deaths from people with lower levels of drink, and I have to worry about anyone’s state of mind after that much alcohol.
“People say things and write things they do not necessarily mean, and the reason for this death is not fully disclosed.”
Hundreds of her friends and family attended a memorial service for the popular former Gerrards Cross convent school pupil last November in Amersham.
Mr Turner said: “The verdict is highly appropriate in the circumstances. The family have lost a really wonderful and beautiful daughter.
“She had a tremendous sense of humour, had compassion in spades and was one of the loveliest daughters a parent could ever hope for.”
Mr Hulett recorded a narrative verdict at Beaconsfield Coroner’s Court on Wednesday.
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