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Bridget Kathleen (Kay) Gilderdale Court case: Lewes Combined Court: Media coverage: 2
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BBC News | 18 January 2010
ME mother ‘helped daughter die’ with morphine syringes
A mother helped end the life of her bed-bound daughter by handing her two syringes of morphine, a court heard.
Bridget Kathleen Gilderdale, 55, of Stonegate, East Sussex, is accused of the attempted murder of her 31-year-old daughter, Lynn on 4 December, 2008.
Lynn Gilderdale developed the debilitating illness ME (Myalgic Encephalopathy) aged 14.
Mrs Gilderdale denies attempted murder at Lewes Crown Court but admits aiding and abetting suicide.
Miss Gilderdale’s illness left her bed-bound and unable to swallow, meaning she was fed through a tube.
Prosecutor Sally Howes QC told the court Mrs Gilderdale spoke to her daughter for about an hour, telling her it was “not the right time” but Miss Gilderdale insisted it was time for her “to go”.
She said at about 0300 GMT on 3 December Mrs Gilderdale gave her daughter two syringes of morphine, which Miss Gilderdale administered herself through an intravenous catheter directly into her vein.
Ms Howes said: “At about 6am, Kay felt that the morphine had not achieved Lynn’s aim of killing herself and so Kay searched the house for tablets.”
Lynn Gilderdale had suffered from ME for about 17 years
The court was told the tablets were crushed with a pestle and mortar and administered through a feeding tube in Miss Gilderdale’s nose.
Later at about 0200 GMT on 4 December, Mrs Gilderdale gave her daughter two or three doses of morphine directly into the intravenous catheter and later gave her three syringes of air.
Ms Howes said Mrs Gilderdale telephoned the assisted suicide organisation Exit in the hope of gaining further advice before giving Miss Gilderdale a further eight tablets.
Miss Gilderdale died at 0710 GMT. A post-mortem examination found that the cause of death was morphine toxicity.
Ms Howes said: “It is the prosecution’s case that when Mrs Gilderdale realised that the two large doses of morphine that she provided to Lynn, that Lynn self-administered to try to end her life… instead of then realising that her daughter’s suicide had gone horribly wrong, she then set about, over the next 30 hours, in performing actions which were designed with no other intention other than terminating her daughter’s life.
“The further morphine, the further cocktail of drugs, the injecting of air – all designed to terminate her daughter’s life. It wasn’t done to make her better, it was done to make sure she died.”
The case continues.
Guardian | 18 January 2010
Mother in court over death of daughter with ME
Kay Gilderdale accused of handing over lethal dose of morphine to 31-year-old daughter Lynn…
Daily Mail | Daily Mail Reporter | 18 January 2010
‘Devoted mother killed ME daughter with lethal drug cocktail and syringes of air’
A ‘caring and loving’ mother helped end her long-suffering daughter’s life by handing her a lethal dose of morphine and a cocktail of drugs, a court heard today.
Bridget Kathleen Gilderdale, 55, was the full-time carer of 31-year-old Lynn who had suffered from myalgic encephalopathy – also known as ME or chronic fatigue syndrome – for 17 years.
She passed two syringes filled with large doses of morphine to her daughter, who injected the pain-relieving medicine herself in a suicide bid at the family home…
Full report here here
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Heart Radio Sussex | 14 January 2010
JURORS called up to hear the trial of a mother accused of attempting to murder her seriously ill daughter were given the option to step down if they had strong feelings about euthanasia.
Bridget Kathleen Gilderdale, known as Kay, has admitted one count of aiding and abetting the suicide of her daughter Lynn, 31, who was effectively paralysed by myalgic encephalopathy – also known as ME or chronic fatigue syndrome – for 17 years before her death on December 4, 2008.
Mrs Gilderdale, 55, of Stonegate, near Heathfield, East Sussex, denies attempted murder
Sitting at Lewes Crown Court, High Court judge Mr Justice Bean told potential jurors: “If you have such strong views on the subject of assisted suicide one way or the other, if you feel you can not give a true verdict on the evidence in this case and your name is one of those called today, say when you come forward and tell me about it.”
Of the first 12 names drawn randomly from the pool, one woman was released after speaking privately to the judge about personal circumstances which might affect her judgment in the case and a replacement was called up.
The jury was then dismissed and asked to return for the opening of the trial on Friday after legal argument. The case is expected to last at least two and a half weeks.
Mrs Gilderdale is on bail with conditions of residence and that she does not leave Europe.
Family and friends have supported her since her arrest and were in court on Tuesday.
Click here for all previous coverage of the Gilderdale family’s case. The 24 postings are archived in reverse date order: Gilderdale case archive on ME agenda