Page last updated at 13:53 GMT, Wednesday, 4 June 2008 14:53 UK

Teen father-to-be hanged himself

Paul Briggs and Kyra Applin
Paul Briggs and Kyra Applin said they wanted to keep their baby

A teenage boy hanged himself after his 15-year-old girlfriend became pregnant, an inquest has heard.

Paul Briggs, 17, of Ferndale, Rhondda, feared he would be reported to police for under-age sex with Kyra Applin, the hearing in Miskin was told.

The couple told their families they wanted the pregnancy to go ahead but he hid his fears about being prosecuted, the inquest heard.

He died three months before the birth. A narrative verdict was recorded.

Det Sgt John Pope told the coroner's court: "The couple met and she was pregnant just a few weeks later.

"Kyra's parents were not happy about the situation but accepted it. Kyra's father said he had never seen Paul depressed.

"But a friend of the family said the situation was causing him some distress and he was afraid that if they parted he would be reported to the police for under-age sex."

The baby is absolutely lovely - she is the spitting image of Paul and I will forever have his memory when I see her
Paul Briggs' mother Angela

Kyra then left the inquest in tears midway through the hearing when told of Paul's fears.

She is raising six-week-old baby girl Mia - her name was chosen by Paul - with her parents at their home in Ferndale.

Her father Graham Applin said he and his wife were "not terribly happy" when she became pregnant but they accepted it.

The inquest heard Kyra found Paul hanging from a bunk-bed in the bedroom they shared at her parents home in January.

Her father tried to save him but paramedics found him dead.

'Really excited'

The inquest heard Paul had been drinking during the day - and the couple had argued about it before he died.

Before the inquest Kyra said: "I don't know why he did it, we were both really looking forward to the baby.

"I had a scan and we found out we were having a girl.

"We held hands, we were both really excited. We even talked about names.

"I liked Michaela but Paul wanted Mia."

Coroner Phillip Walters recorded a narrative verdict at the inquest.

He said: "An argument took place but I don't think Paul intended to take his own life. It seems he was trying to draw attention to his circumstances.

"He died at his own hand but I don't feel a suicide verdict would be correct."

After the inquest Paul's mum Angela said: "The baby is absolutely lovely - she is the spitting image of Paul and I will forever have his memory when I see her."

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