Bubbly teenager, 16, jumped from bridge over fears of school punishment after she was caught downing vodka shots
Wendy Maguire was twice over legal drink drive limit when she jumpedTeenager 'thought she was going to be in trouble', said coroner todayParents Leila and Niall dismiss claim that daughter would take her own life
12:20 GMT, 28 November 2012
Wendy Maguire, 16, who fell to her death from a footbridge after downing shots of alcohol
A teenager downed shots of vodka at school then jumped to her death from a motorway bridge because she was 'worried about getting into trouble', an inquest heard today.
Wendy Maguire, 16, left
the school grounds after being sent to the head teacher's office when staff reported smelling alcohol on her breath.
Two hours after her parents were called into the school in Ilford, Wendy, who had consumed twice the legal drink drive limit, jumped off a bridge and died.
Recording a verdict of suicide, coroner
Chinyere Inyama said: 'Wendy was not the type of person who would do
things on impulse. She was the kind of person who thought things
'My view is that Wendy, thinking she
was going to be in trouble, in a short space of time thought things
through and decided she was going to jump off the bridge.'
‘Bright and bubbly’ Wendy downed shots before classes started on January 13 this year, it was heard today.
After noticing the smell of alcohol on her breath, staff sent the 'tipsy' teenager to the headteachers office at Palmer Catholic Academy in Ilford.
Wendy, who was predicted A and B GCSE grades, stormed out as Deputy head Paul Egan was on the phone to her parents asking them to pick her up.
But two hours after her parents were called in, she had jumped from a footbridge in Leytonstone.
School friends she had been drinking with said Wendy was crying when she came to their classroom before she left the school.
Lois Blasse, 16, said: 'She told me to get rid of the drink. I think she was worried. Then she hugged me and walked off.'
Terrible loss: 'Wendy was confident, popular and smart' and dreamed of becoming an accountant, according to her mother
The Palmer Catholic Academy where Wendy downed shots of alcohol before being caught and storming out of the premises
Miss Blasse, who played basketball with Wendy, texted her when she heard she was missing and asked where she was.
Walthamstow Coroners Court heard Wendy
replied saying she was on a bus 'going somewhere' but when Lois told
her to go home she never got a reply and her phone was later switched
Student Naomi Rimmer said she saw
Wendy stumbling around school at 9am and when she asked her why she was
drinking she replied: 'It’s fun.'
But two hours later a witness saw her
on a bus looking upset and Wendy told her the school had found out she
had been drinking and called her parents.
She was later seen standing on a footbridge looking ‘depressed and sad.’
Schoolboy Tahir Hussain, 14, who was passing by, said Wendy told him she was going to kill herself and he told her not to.
Wendy's devastated family said she was 'happy and contented' and had never expressed any suicidal thoughts before
Facebook tributes: Wendy Maguire was much-loved
'I told her to go home or go back to school. She was crying and kept saying I’m just staying on the bridge,' he said.
Eyewitnesses then saw her leaning over the railings looking down into the traffic below before jumping off.
A post-mortem revealed Wendy died of head injuries and was twice the legal alcohol limit at the time.
The coroner said he was satisfied the school was not at fault for allowing her to leave or that it contributed to her death.
He added: 'I try not to use the word tragic very much but this really is a case of a tragic death.'
Speaking after the verdict Wendy’s devastated family said she was ‘happy and contented’ and had never expressed any suicidal thoughts before.
Her dad Niall, a taxi driver, said: 'We talked about what she wanted to do in years to come. We didn’t expect this at all.'
Wendy’s mum Leila, 49, added: 'Wendy was confident, popular and smart. She dreamed of becoming an accountant and was looking forward to going to university. This was not a girl who would take her own life.
'No one has come forward to say they saw her climbing on the footbridge which she would have had to have done to jump. I don’t think there was enough evidence to come to this verdict.'
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