A MAN killed himself in a ‘rare’ poisoning after struggling for years with mental health issues.

James Tank, 44, died by suicide after poisoning himself near Evesham on March 23 this year.

Mr Tank was found unresponsive on the landing of a home in New Street in Bretforton near Evesham and later died in hospital.

Worcestershire’s assistant coroner Sarah Murphy said Mr Tank had struggled for years with mental health issues after the deaths of his mother and sister and the breakdown of his marriage.

Mr Tank struggled with anxiety and depression, self-harmed and tried to kill himself several times, the inquest at Worcestershire Coroner’s Court heard on Thursday (August 31).

The inquest revealed how Mr Tank discovered his mother’s body after she had hanged herself when he was just ten years old. Mr Tank’s sister then killed herself in the same part of the house many years later.

He grappled with homelessness, money problems, divorce, and legal issues, according to mental health professionals, and also claimed he was “fighting against oppression by the state.”

He also regularly espoused ‘negative beliefs’ about health workers and police officers.

In a statement, Mr Tank’s on-off partner Hannah Robinson said it was “very apparent” the 44-year-old was “suffering greatly” and “in a very bad way” when they reconnected in early 2021.

She described the final two years of Mr Tank’s life as “horrendous” and blamed two years of failures by police and mental health professionals for his death.

In the months leading up to his death, Ms Robinson said Mr Tank would regularly message her saying that he was going to kill himself but did not do it.

On March 23, Ms Robinson found the 44-year-old lying face down, unresponsive.

The inquest at Worcestershire Coroner’s Court in Stourport heard that in January 2022, Ms Robinson, who had just left her nine-year job to care for Mr Tank, said there had “never been significant improvements” in the last year.

Ms Robinson, who met Mr Tank in 2014, said he was regularly self-harming and was threatening to kill himself on most days and she had tried to get him sectioned for his own safety.

A non-molestation order issued by his ex-wife had triggered Mr Tank to further deteriorate and led to a suicide attempt.

Mr Tank had moved back in with Ms Robinson at the start of this year but after showing some signs of improvement he returned to not leaving the house and was making daily suicidal threats.

The coroner ruled there were no failings on the part of mental health professionals that contributed to his death saying it was “clear [Mr Tank] was under care and had been receiving regular contact when he had engaged.”

The inquest heard how Mr Tank had a ‘patchy’ relationship with mental health professionals over the last decade, which saw numerous missed appointments, and Mr Tank was eventually discharged in June 2022 after failing to turn up for an appointment.

Mr Tank met face-to-face and spoke over the phone with mental health professionals in the year up until his death, but he often failed to turn up to appointments and ignored calls.

If you need help there are people you can speak to:

  • The Herefordshire and Worcestershire 24 hour urgent mental health helpline is available to anyone needing urgent mental health support. Its free to call and open 24 hours a day to people of all ages - 0808 196 9127
  • Worcestershire Safe Haven provides telephone support and face-to-face appointments to Worcestershire residents who are experiencing a mental health crisis. Call 01905 600400 any day of the week between 6pm and midnight for support and signposting.
  • Call 116 123 to talk to Samaritans, or email: jo@samaritans.org for a reply within 24 hours