Boy, 10, accidentally hangs himself on makeshift games console ’swing’

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A TEN-YEAR-OLD from South Yorkshire accidentally hanged himself with his dressing gown rope - the same day he was named ‘star pupil’ at school, an inquest heard.

Todd Horsfield got caught in a makeshift swing which he hung from the ceiling to rest his weight on while playing computer games - just hours after being named Star Pupil of The Day at his school.

He was discovered by his sister and despite attempts by his mother Louise to rescuscitate him, he couldn’t be saved.

An inquest heard that after returning from school on March 24, Todd had asked to go out and play with his friends, but was told to go and tidy his room.

He went upstairs in a ‘bad mood’ and refused to have any tea, before swinging on the dressing gown cord, which was attached to his cabin bed.

Todd, from Barnsley, was discovered at around 8pm, and an ambulance was called, but he was pronounced dead in hospital at 9.30pm.

His family were too upset to attend the inquest hearing, but the court heard from Detective Constable Darren McConnell, their family liaison officer from South Yorkshire Police.

DC McConnell said police investigations had found there had been no issues with bullying or any other problems at school.

He said that on the day of his death, Todd had been named star pupil and was “happy and proud he had achieved that”.

DC McConnell said no reason had been uncovered to suggest Todd would want to take his own life.

He told the inquest: “My view and after speaking to my colleagues is that we believe this was an accident.”

DC McConnell said there had been no suspicious circumstances suggesting anyone else having involvement in Todd’s death and police had found nothing of any relevance to suggest his death had been a deliberate act.

He said there was no internet access on Todd’s computer games console, ruling out the influence of any website in what happened.

“He was a happy young boy who had no problems or issues brought to the family’s attention,” DC McConnell added.

“He enjoyed his family and also enjoyed going to school.”

Assistant coroner Louise Slater, recording a narrative verdict, said she was able to ‘completely discount’ the idea Todd had taken his life.

She said: “Todd had this swing by his bed and had been known to use it to support his body weight whilst playing on the console.

“This is a particularly tragic accident. There are no easy or pleasant inquests, but certainly ones that will stay with you longer.

“I cant imagine what grief the family has gone through. I hope my ruling gives them some comfort today.”