Nottingham

Amber Peat: Girl, 13, 'found hanged after chores row'

Amber Peat Image copyright Other
Image caption Amber Peat "always had a sad face", according to a former class teacher

A 13-year-old girl was found hanged after she went missing from home following an argument about chores, an inquest has heard.

Amber Peat's body was found in bushes three days after she walked out of her home in Mansfield on 30 May 2015.

She left at about 17:10 GMT and was reported missing almost eight hours later, at 00:56 on 31 May.

Amber "always had a sad face" and "felt very put upon" at home, her former teacher told the inquest.

Joanne Holt told Nottinghamshire Coroner's Court: "She had lots of jobs to do that her siblings perhaps weren't expected to do in the same way.

"She didn't feel she was treated fairly in comparison to her siblings.

"She felt her siblings perhaps got away with things that she perhaps didn't get away with."

Image caption Amber's body was found in Westfield Lane, about a mile from her home in Bosworth Street

Amber lived with her mother Kelly Peat and stepfather Daniel Peat, while her biological father Adrian Cook lived in Scotland.

Mrs Holt was Amber's class teacher at John Davies Primary in Huthwaite for just over a term, from January 2013 onwards, until the teenager moved schools during the summer term.

The inquest heard how Amber went to many different schools as she had moved house "no less than 11 times", according to assistant coroner Laurinda Bower.

The coroner asked Mrs Holt to tell her what she remembered about Amber.

Image caption Amber's mother and stepfather appealed for information when she went missing

Mrs Holt said: "I remember she was quite an unhappy child. That's what stands out mostly in my head.

"She never really seemed happy. She was usually alone. She always had a sad face."

Mrs Holt said she had tried to talk to Amber's mother about her problems "on a number of occasions" after school.

"I think on two occasions we had a meeting with mum but couldn't get much response from her," she said.

"I didn't feel that anything was acted upon or really acknowledged that there was a problem."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Floral tributes and messages to Amber Peat were left near where her body was found

Det Con Tina Gilfoyle, who investigated Amber's death for Nottinghamshire Police, said she had been "troubled quite a lot" while on a family holiday to Cornwall in the week before her death.

Family members told police "there had been arguments" and Amber "had been prevented from going to the beach," the detective said.

While there, Amber and her cousin wrote a "Run Away List" containing items such as a torch and a wig, but her cousin apparently thought it was a joke.

Amber's stepfather allegedly threatened to hit her if she continued scowling at him while on the drive home from holiday, the court heard.

That is what one of Amber's siblings told police, but Mr Peat has not yet given his evidence and has not been questioned about the allegation.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Volunteers from the community helped police search for Amber
Image caption Posters were put in the windows of shops and houses as the public joined the search for Amber

Amber was apparently made to clear the car out when they arrived home from holiday, and on the day she died she had been asked to clean a cool box.

"She wasn't happy about it," Det Con Gilfoyle said.

"She is reported as complaining and trying to get mum's attention, and so mum shuts the door leaving Amber alone in the hallway. A short while later the door slams and Amber is gone."

The officer said Amber's family went to look for her, but also went to Tesco and did some shopping before finally reporting her missing.

The inquest continues.

Follow BBC East Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, or on Instagram. Send your story ideas to eastmidsnews@bbc.co.uk.

Related Topics

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites