An inquest has concluded that failings at a mental health unit in Leeds contributed ‘more than minimally’ to the death of a patient, Moncef Kaddouri, who fell from his 13th-floor flat in 2017.

7BR’s Richard Baker represented Mr Kaddouri’s family during the six-day inquest at Wakefield Coroner’s Court. The jury heard that Mr Kaddouri had a troubled psychiatric history for which he received care from community mental health services. He was also admitted to the Becklin Centre in Leeds on numerous occasions, and was detained there immediately before his death under Section 2 of the Mental Health Act 1983 due to concerns about his welfare.

On 19th October 2017, Mr Kaddouri escaped whilst on escorted leave within the grounds of the hospital and was eventually located at his flat on the 13th floor of a high rise building. By the time police had forced entry to gain access to the apartment, Mr Kaddouri had fallen to his death.

The jury examined the policies, procedures and actions of the Becklin Centre and West Yorkshire Police, concluding that the Becklin Centre did not adequately assess the risk on 19th October 2019 and Mr Kaddouri should not have been granted leave. Additionally, the Becklin Centre failed to communicate adequate information to the West Yorkshire Police after he escaped.

Mr Kaddouri’s mother expressed her concern for current and future patients of the Becklin Centre as well as her hope that the lessons learned from her son’s death will result in the creation of safer environments for patients detained under the Mental Health Act.

The case has been reported in the Yorkshire Post and can be viewed here.

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