A much-loved teenager who died after a fall from a Banbury car park took his own life, a coroner has ruled.
Tom Boomer, 14, of Queens Street, Bloxham, died on March 31 after falling from the fifth floor of Bolton Road multi-storey car park.
At an inquest at Oxford Coroner’s Court yesterday (Wednesday) it was revealed Tom had recently been diagnosed with moderate depression and put on antidepressant medicine fluoxetin.
Tom, who moved schools in January from The Warriner in Bloxham to Chipping Norton, had first been seen by his GP before he was referred to the Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.
Giving evidence, Ann Rowlands, child and adolescent psychiatrist, said she had met with Tom on March 20 and he began taking the medication on March 25. She said the antidepressants could see an increase in suicidal thoughts but that the team had concluded there was a higher risk not putting him on medication.
Both Tom’s parents and mental health staff had described an improvement in his mood in the days leading up to his death.
Coroner Darren Salter said: “It does seem that Tom sadly fell from the car park having gone there in the early hours of the morning.”
Mr Salter added he did not believe the timescale suggested the incident was due to the medication.
Speaking after the inquest, Tom’s parents Douglas and Clare said: “The world can be a very confusing place and adolescence an especially difficult time. Young people need the inner strength to deal with these pressures and if, like Tom, they struggle on their own, they need to know they can call upon the resources of professionals.
“Under funding of mental health and youth support budgets means the help many young people in Oxfordshire need is simply not available or comes too late. As a society we have to look at how to help young people such as Tom.”