16 April 2024

Before Coroner Sean Horsted
Essex Coroner’s Court, Court Room 1, Seax House, Victoria Road South, CM1 1LX
Opens 17 April 2024
Scheduled for 7 days

Daniel Weighman, 38, died by ligature on 6 January 2023 whilst on remand at HMP Chelmsford. Now an inquest will look at the circumstances of his death and the care he received in prison.

Daniel’s death is one of nine self-inflicted deaths at the prison since 2020.

Daniel was one of eight siblings who loved football, cooking and looking around charity shops. His family said he would light up a room like a light bulb with his smile and laughter.

Daniel had paranoid schizophrenia and a history of self-harm and alcohol misuse.

On arrival at HMP Chelmsford, was not referred to the mental health team during his initial screening or seen by a GP, despite the nurse being aware of his mental ill health. During the screening, Daniel also asked to be seen by a healthcare professional. 

In the weeks leading up to January 2023, Daniel’s behaviour began to change and he was becoming increasingly agitated.

On 1 January, Daniel told prison officers that he would self-harm unless he was seen by prison healthcare. He repeated this to a paramedic later that day. No safety plan for prisoners at risk of suicide or self-harm (known as an ACCT) was put in place. 

On 3 January, Daniel reported to prison officers that he was hearing voices and asked to be moved to the healthcare unit. A referral was made to the mental health unit by email. This was not responded to until after Daniel’s death. 

Daniel repeatedly rang his cell bell throughout the day asking when he would be moved to healthcare. 

Later that afternoon, a prison officer found Daniel with self-harm injuries and an ACCT was opened. He was placed on hourly observations. 

About two hours later, Daniel was found ligatured in his cell. He was taken to hospital where he died three days later. 

The inquest will now consider the care Daniel received in the prison prior to his death.



For further information, please contact Leila Hagmann on [email protected]

The family are represented by INQUEST Lawyers Group members Gimhani Eriyagolla and Alisha McSporran of Hodge Jones & Allen and Dr Cian Murphy of Doughty Street Chambers. They are supported by INQUEST Senior Caseworker Selen Cavcav.

Other Interested Persons represented at the inquest are HMP Chelmsford, and Castle Rock Group (CRG).

Journalists should refer to the Samaritans Media Guidelines for reporting suicide and self-harm and guidance for reporting on inquests. 

Other relevant deaths:

  • Mark Jozunas, died a self-inflicted death in a segregation cell in HMP Chelmsford in March 2021. He had a longstanding diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia. An inquest found a series of failings by prison and healthcare staff caused Mark’s death. Media release.
  • David Morgan, 35, died a self-inflicted death at HMP Chelmsford in August 2018. David had a history of self-harm. He died eight days after falling unconscious in a holding cell, where prison staff ignored his condition and mocked him as he was dying. Media release.
  • Dean Saunders, 25, died a self-inflicted death in HMP Chelmsford in 2015 after being taken into custody when he was in severe mental health crisis. An inquest found that neglect contributed to his death. Media release.