Inquest told about Whitby man's final hours

Mark Leeman
Mark Leeman

A coroner was told today about the tragic circumstances that led to a popular Whitby man's suicide.

Father-of-two Mark Leeman, 27, was driving a black Vauxhall Corsa towards Whitby when the car left the road and hit a wall and a building at Skelly Farm, between the two Aislaby junctions, at around 2.20am in the early hours of August 11.

Traffic constable David Foster told the inquest that he estimated the car had been travelling at speeds of up to 90mph at the time of the crash.

Mr Leeman was not wearing a seatbelt and there was no sign of braking or evasive action, TC Foster added.

"The injuries were very severe and, in my opinion, if Mr Leeman had been wearing a seatbelt it would not have saved his life," said TC Foster.

Coroner Michael Oakley read a statement from Mr Leeman's estranged wife Kally.

In it, she chronicled their 10 years together, during which they separated on a number of occasions.

In the months before his death, Mr Leeman and his wife separated and started seeing other people.

They reconciled but on August 10 the couple had argued, Mrs Leeman said when she got home from her bar job Mr Leeman had shown her a note he'd written in his phone in which he outlined details about his funeral and what to do with his belongings.

He left the house but was convinced to return by his wife, however, he left a second time.

The court heard Mrs Leeman rang the police to report concerns for her husband's safety but within an hour, the police came to her door to tell her he had been involved in a crash.

Recording a verdict of suicide Mr Oakley said: "I have to be sure beyond a reasonable doubt that this was a deliberate act.

"I am satisfied of that fact having heard the testimony today,"

Mr Leeman was a scaffolder and assistant coach with Whitby Fisherman’s FC.

He was described as a "hard-working, popular and loving man" who adored his two children.