Man hanged himself hours after finding partner had taken her own…

A man killed himself just hours after finding his partner had hung herself at their home in Honiton.

An inquest at Exeter’s County Hall heard how Lech Augustynowicz had left the home they shared to go shopping on July 10, 2016, and when he returned home around half an hour later he found Krystyna Maliga dead.

The 61-year-old had left two handwritten notes – one for him and the other for her two children.

In the note to her partner she revealed, “I’m screwed at work”, and in the note to her children she referred to concerns about who would look after her when she was no longer working and added: “I done it myself as I’m scared of getting old.”

An ambulance was called to the house at around 1.55pm. Police were already at the scene carrying out resuscitation attempts having taken over from her partner.

Police reported there was no evidence at the scene to suggest she had not taken her own life and neighbours confirmed they had not heard any noise or disturbance coming from the house.

In a statement made to police, Mr Augustynowicz said: “She told me about problems she was having but I did not know how much impact it was having on her until I read it in her note she left me today.”

Police were due to carry out a welfare check on Mr Augustynowicz, 55, following family concerns about his safety, but they were called to his home at 8pm after he sent a text to his partner’s daughter saying, “I’m going to meet up with Krystyna”.

Police confirmed they were given no indications by Mr Augustynowicz he was feeling suicidal.

The former recycling centre worker was found hanged at his home in Kings Terrace, Honiton, and was taken to the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital where he was pronounced dead the next day at around 2.30pm.

The cause of both deaths was confirmed as hanging.

The inquest heard Mrs Maliga had moved to the UK with Mr Augustynowicz in 2009, after her daughter had moved to the UK with her son to be with her partner.

They lived in Exeter for three years before moving to Honiton. She was described as being very hard working and had worked as a launderette assistant for five years where it was said she had experienced bullying and had recently been worried she would be accused of stealing a pair of headphones which had gone missing.

In a statement her daughter, Malgorzeta Maliga, descried how her father had died in 2008. She said her mum had been secretive about her new relationship and said they did not have a good relationship with Mr Augustynowicz.

She said: “When dad was alive she was a really outgoing and strong person. She lost all the part of her personality and became really withdrawn and quiet.

“As the years went on things got worse and she was working and working all of the time. Lech was very lazy.”

She added there had been a time when she had not been in contact with her mum but they had been rebuilding their relationship since March 2015, but Mr Augustynowicz was “very controlling” and she felt he “wasn’t good for her”.

Her brother Pawal said the last time he had seen his mother was on Christmas Day in 2015.

He said: “He treated her badly.”

The coroner read out a letter written by Miss Maliga, a care worker, saying how she believed her mother had not taken her own life and Mr Augustynowicz had killed her.

She said her suicide notes made “no sense” as she and her brother would have looked after her if she became ill.

She also said Mr Augustynowicz had told her he had terminal cancer.

“I was scared of him but not anymore,” she said and concluded: “I believe Lech killed my mum and used the bullying(at work) as a an excuse. He was unpredictable and a mentally ill person.”

A post-mortem examination confirmed Mr Augustynowicz was not suffering from any disease, but had been seen for respiratory problems and back pain.

Coroner Eizabeth Earland said: “There is no evidence anyone else caused the ligature around her neck to be put there other than herself. That’s very important.

“Clearly also life was getting on top of her, according to a number of sources.”

Recording a conclusion of suicide, she said: “I’m satisfied beyond reasonable doubt she intended the consequence of what happened and she was the architect of her misfortune and that she herself hung herself.”

A verdict of suicide was also recorded for Mr Augustynowicz.


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