Nelson dad died after slashing wrist

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A Nelson man slashed his left wrist, severing two arteries and causing his death – but a coroner said he could not be certain he had meant to kill himself, an inquest heard.

Paul Routh (46), of Halifax Road, Nelson, was a type 2 diabetic who also suffered from bipolar disorder and had mental health problems, the hearing at Burnley Coroner’s Court was told.

Mr Routh was found with his wrists cut by his wife and children at their home in July.

Emergency services were called, but they were unable to save Mr Routh and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

But his widow, Rachel Routh, said he would not have committed suicide.

Despite his health problems, he had been doing well recently and the couple were looking forward to celebrating their wedding anniversary, she told the hearing.

“I can’t explain it. It was like a bolt from the blue,” Mrs Routh said.

She said Mr Routh had tried to take his own life some years ago but added he would not have done so in his own home and would have left a note if he meant to kill himself.

He had stabbed himself at a time he knew his wife and children would be coming home and had opened a door for them.

“I had learned to deal with his problems and could see the indications when he was having difficulties.

“He had been well for a long time and had stopped drinking alcohol,” she said.

Pathologist Dr Walid Salman said a post mortem examination revealed significant injuries to Mr Routh’s body.

There were eight stab wounds to his chest, one of which had perforated his lung. There were also two deep cuts to his left wrist which had severed arteries. He had lost a lot of blood.

He gave the cause of death as multiple injuries.

East Lancashire Coroner Mr Richard Taylor said Mrs Routh knew when her husband needed space and could spot when things were not right.

“You had a lot of things to look forward to. He wanted to be found by you as he knew you would look after him,” he said.

Mr Taylor returned an open verdict.