A PENSIONER killed himself after being accused of sexual assault, an inquest heard.
Keith Lowe, aged 70, was found hanged at his home just one month after being arrested by police.
Bolton Coroners Court heard Mr Lowe left a note on his bedside table with a message for a relative of the person who made the complaint.
It contained the relative’s name and said: “I hope you’re happy.”
He was interviewed by detectives on February 19 and denied the allegation.
Mr Lowe was released on bail and no charges were brought by police.
The divorced former welder, of Rigby Avenue, Blackrod, told a friend the pressure of the police investigation had become too much for him.
His friend and former partner, Wendy Davies, told the inquest Mr Lowe had become very depressed following his contact with police.
She said: “He said he was going to do something. He said he was going to ride off a cliff on his motorcycle.
“I didn’t believe him. He said he couldn’t handle the pressure of what was going to happen to him.
“He couldn’t handle what was being said.”
The inquest heard Mr Lowe, who had previously taken part in the Holcombe Hunt, had also threatened to shoot himself.
Ms Davies said she had known Mr Lowe for 14 years and during that time they had been together for about five years.
She said they split in 2006 but remained friends and were in contact every day.
She said he was a funny, witty person and was always “full of beans”. But she added that all changed in February.
Mr Lowe went to see his GP on February 25, a week after his police interview.
He did not tell his doctor the details of the police case but said he was feeling depressed and was prescribed anti-depressants.
He was found hanged on March 18. His suicide note also stated: “Can’t take any more. Adios. Sorry Wendy.
Tablets not worked.”
Mr Lowe married in the early 1960s and worked as a welder at Horwich Loco Works. He had three sons with his wife, Anne. They divorced in the 1980s.
The inquest heard his exwife was no longer alive.
Detective Inspector Andrew Cunliffe told the inquest Mr Lowe’s arrest would have been very stressful.
He said: “An arrest is bound to have an effect on a person, especially with an allegation of this nature.”
Assistant deputy coroner Peter Watson recorded a verdict that Mr Lowe took his own life while the balance of his mind was disturbed. He added: “This investigation was clearly something that had a great impact on him.
“This was an allegation and no more. He vehemently denied the allegation and we will never know whether or not the investigation would have led to charges.”