Dagenham prisoner killed by lorry after arguing with his girlfriend, inquest hears

Carl Samuel, who died in an accident on the A14 at Levington in January 2011

Carl Samuel, who died in an accident on the A14 at Levington in January 2011 - Credit: Archant

A prisoner who was killed after jumping in front of a lorry had been arguing with his girlfriend over his fears of “failing to live up to her expectations”, an inquest has heard.

Flowers placed at the lay-by on the A14 close to where Carl Samuel died

Flowers placed at the lay-by on the A14 close to where Carl Samuel died - Credit: Archant

Dagenham hip-hop MC Carl Samuel, 22, who was serving a prison sentence in Hollesley Bay in Suffolk for causing death by dangerous driving, died on January 15, 2011 after being struck on the A14, near Lavenham.

Today, at the first day of the inquest into his death, the jury inquest was told how his on-off girlfriend of six years, Carla Fuller, would visit him in prison at weekends, where he “appeared a lot happier”.

The IP-City Centre in Ipswich had earlier heard that Samuel had previously tried to hang himself in another prison, and that he suffered “nightmares” over hitting and killing a pedestrian in London in 2009 – the incident for which he had been imprisoned.

Suffolk coroner Dr Peter Dean, referring to a statement from Allie Cotton, the Suffolk police officer overseeing the case, which also included a statement from Samuel’s mother, Susan, said that after Ms Fuller was unable to visit Samuel one weekend, Samuel wrote in a letter to her that he “felt down”.

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On the day of the fatal collision, in which Samuel was on a day release from 9am to 5.30pm, he and Ms Fuller visited a hotel in Ipswich with friends. After the friends left at 4pm, Samuel and Ms Fuller left together and discussed the letter. Samuel said he feared he would “not be the person” she wanted after his eventual release from prison, the inquest heard.

He feared that he would “not live up to her expectations” and an “argument started”, the inquest was told.

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The jury then heard how Samuel ordered Ms Fuller to drive him to a multi-storey car park, which he could not get into due to an issue with a door, and said, when he got back in the car, that he was “going to jump off”.

Samuel told her to pull in to a layby on the A14 eastbound near Levington, after he had said he did not want to return to Hollesley Bay yet. He got out of the car and started walking along the layby, leaving Ms Fuller “hysterical” in the car and “really concerned” that he would try to take his own life. He crouched down and then jumped in front of a lorry, the inquest was told.

Ms Fuller is due to give evidence later this afternoon.

The inquest, which could take up to three weeks, continues.

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