Devastated mum had to identify daughter's body after she died drinking with pals two days into Freshers week

Devastated mum had to identify daughter's body after she died drinking with pals two days into Freshers week

November 13, 2020

A HEARTBROKEN mum had to identify her daughter's body after she died drinking with pals just two days into Fresher's Week, an inquest heard.

Stephanie Sillifant, 18, was discovered dead at her halls of residence at Newcastle University in October.


She was one of three students who died over the same weekend – sparking a police warning over drugs.

Jeni Larmour, 18, was found dead in her halls at Newcastle hours before Stephanie's body was discovered.

Northumbria University student Nathaniel Pavlovic, 21, also died.

Both Jeni and Nathaniel died after taking substances that were "yet to be identified", an inquest was told.

All three had been boozing with pals during Fresher's Week around two days after arriving to start their studies.

On October 3, Jeni was found dead in her halls of residence with police confirming at the time ketamine was found nearby.

Just hours later, Nathaniel was discovered with MDMA nearby at an address.

Stephanie was then found dead in her halls, with police again confirming ketamine was discovered nearby.

A police investigation into all three deaths is ongoing.

'I MISS YOU SO MUCH'

The inquest heard Stephanie, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts, suffered from underlying health issues and had arrived at university just two days before the tragedy.

Newcastle senior coroner Karen Dilks told the hearing: "It is believed Stephanie was with others where she was living having consumed alcohol".

Her mum Nicola Sillofant, who identified her tragic daughter's body, paid tribute online.

She said: "Hi Sweetie, Just to let you know that I love you and miss you so much.

“I can’t imagine my life without you in it but I do believe that you were taken from us because you are needed elsewhere.

“I have no doubt that I will see you again, it just probably won’t be for a while. Go be the remarkable person I always knew you were going to be.”

She added: “I’m so very proud of you and I will always be in awe of everything you achieved. All my love now and forever, Mum.”

Jeni, of County Armagh, was also identified by her mum, who described her daughter as her "beautiful princess and best friend".

She attended the Royal School Armagh and was a Combined Cadet Force member.

Her former school, where Jeni was a deputy head girl, paid tribute to the "model pupil".

Ms Dilks said: "Jeni was believed, on the evening of Oct 2, to have consumed alcohol and socialised with others from the flat in which she was residing.

“It is believed she may have taken a substance yet to be identified.

"Investigations are ongoing to establish the precise cause of death.”

DRUGS WARNING

Nathaniel, of Halifax, West Yorks, was identified by his dad Alex Pavlovic.

The inquest heard he had been drinking with friends the night before he died and is also believed to have taken an unknown substance.

A forth teen, Mark Johnston, 18, of Washington, Tyne and Wear, also died over the same weekend after allegedly taking MDMA.

Police arrested a total of 11 people in connection with the four deaths.

Chief Inspector Steve Wykes said at the time: “This weekend we have seen the tragic loss of four young lives and our thoughts continue to be with the family and friends of those who have sadly died.

“Although our investigations are at an early stage and we continue to establish the circumstances around these tragedies, we want to reiterate our warning to people against taking drugs for recreational use.

“The consequences could cost you your life.

“We will continue to work with both universities and will be increasing our patrols in the areas where these tragedies have occurred.”

All three inquests were adjourned until a later date.


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