Barry West died in August last year after being found slumped over a table in Maidstone, Kent
The son of Fred and Rose West died of a painkiller overdose after telling a doctor his life was ‘not worth living,’ an inquest heard.
Barry West was just seven when he watched his parents beat his sister Heather to death at their Cromwell Street home in Gloucester.
He died at the age of 40 on August 28 last year after being found slumped over a table at his supported living accommodation in Maidstone, Kent.
An inquest into his death this week heard how Mr West, who was too scared to give evidence at his mother’s 1995 trial, had a ‘complex medical history’.
It was said he tried to commit suicide in 2015, and that he had taken ‘many overdoses’ alongside suffering from PTSD, anxiety, depression and chronic pain.
Mr West also struggled with dissociative identity disorder, in which people may feel the presence of other identities with their own names, voices and mannerisms.
Coroner Patricia Harding, sitting at Maidstone Coroner’s Court, heard how Mr West felt ‘abandoned’ by the NHS and died after injecting himself with pain relieving medication.
Fred West killed himself in prison in 1995 while awaiting trial on 12 murder charges. His wife, 67, was sentenced to life in jail without parole for ten murders.
The couple killed West’s step-daughter Charmaine, as well as Heather.
He was just seven when he watched his parents (above) beat his sister Heather to death at their Cromwell Street home in Gloucester
An inquest into Mr West’s death this week heard how Mr West, who was too scared to give evidence at his mother’s 1995 trial, had a ‘complex medical history’
The inquest heard how Mr West – who changed his name to Michael Moore – had an addiction to opioids, as well as a history of heroin misuse dating back almost 20 years.
The hearing was told how he was living in ‘supported accommodation’ in Maidstone after being released from St Martin’s mental health hospital in Canterbury on August 3.
Giving evidence at the inquest, Nicholas Esson, a mental health manager at Kent County Council, said Mr West was having ‘difficulty coping with pain’ and felt he had ‘no quality of life’.
Pictured: Heather West, who was killed by her parents in June 1987
He said that when he met with a social worker on August 26 – just two days before he died – he said he ‘felt abandoned’ by mental health services.
Mr Esson said that in the wake of Mr West’s death an internal review had been launched into how better to support people during Covid-19 pandemic.
The inquest heard how Mr West had ‘clashed’ with his doctor about the best drugs to treat his chronic shoulder and back pain, with the serial killer’s son saying he wanted to be put on ‘opioid treatment’, which he said made him ‘happier’ and the ‘most pain free’.
Mr West’s doctor told the inquest: ‘There were many times he was very frustrated at our unwillingness to prescribe an additional opioid – and he said life was not worth living.’
Ms Harding ruled that Mr West had died following ‘voluntary injections of pain relieving medication’ and gave a verdict of misadventure.
Barry was Rose and Fred West’s youngest child, with the couple also parents to daughters Heather Ann, Mae June and Louise, alongside son Stephen, 45.
Rose also had Tara, Rosemary Junior and Lucyanna outside the relationship.
In June 1987, Heather, 16, became the final victim of the Wests after suffering years or trauma and abuse at the hands of her parents.
Barry, then seven, witnessed the death of his sister at the hands of her parents.
Fred West killed himself in prison in 1995 while awaiting trial on 12 murder charges. His wife, 67, was sentenced to life in jail without parole for ten murders. Pictured: The victims
Barry was Rose and Fred West’s youngest child, with the couple also parents to daughters Heather Ann, Mae June (above) and Louise, alongside son Stephen
Taken into care five years later, he was too scared to give evidence at his mother’s 1995 trial and was plagued by nightmares and psychiatric problems his entire life.
A family source said: ‘He never found peace, never escaped the ghosts of Cromwell Street. Of all the Wests’ younger children, Barry had the most difficult life.’
Initially remaining in the Gloucester area after the trial, Barry later moved to a different part of the country, living under a new identity.
Barry’s bedroom had been in the soundproofed cellar at 25 Cromwell Street, and, as the only other son apart from older brother Stephen, he had been close to his father.
In an interview in 2002, Barry gave a harrowing account of life inside the House of Horrors and recalled a June night in 1987 when Heather came home late to face the wrath of his parents.
Pictured left: Anne Marie, Fred West’s daughter with another woman and right: Stephen West
‘It was about 3am when I heard Heather coming in,’ he said. ‘I heard my dad shouting, ‘Where have you been? We’ve been waiting for you.’
‘I heard my mum slap her, then I looked through the crack and saw my dad walk round behind her and put his leg out. Then he grabbed her neck and tripped her over.
‘She went on to the floor. I could see her just a few feet away. Then my mum just booted her. She was kicking and kicking her and calling her a slag. My dad still had her by the throat.
‘Then, when he tried to get her to do things to him, she refused. I think that’s why she ended up dead.’
After 15 minutes, Rose ‘rubbed her hands together’ and said: ‘Right, let’s clear this up.’
Barry said: ‘I could hear my dad wrapping her in some plastic and I could see my mum scrubbing the floor with a bucket and brush.
‘There was some white bubbly stuff which must have been soap.
‘Mum was telling him to hurry up and he asked her to help him, but she said, ‘I can’t. I’ve got to get rid of this before the kids get up.’ ‘
Fred West with his wife Rose at his daughter Anna’s wedding in 1994
Later, Barry was forced by his father to disguise Heather’s grave. ‘I didn’t realise what I was doing at the time,’ he said.
‘When Dad said do something you did it, you never stopped to ask him why.’
Barry and his siblings were later told Heather had gone to university. Of his mother, an inmate at HMP New Hall in West Yorkshire, Barry said: ‘She’s a psychopath.
‘I was happy when my dad committed suicide and now I think they should put my mum in a room with all the parents of the people she helped murder so they could tear her to pieces.’
The couple’s other victims included Alison Chambers, 16, Shirley Robinson, 18, Juanita Mott, 18, Shirley Hubbard, 15, Theresa Siegnethaler, 21, Lucy Partington, 21, Carol Ann Cooper, 15, Lynda Gough, 19, Rena Costello (Fred’s ex-wife), 27, Charmaine West (Fred’s daughter), 8, and Anne McFall, 18.
Fred is also believed to have also killed 15-year-old Mary Bastholm, although her remains have never been found.
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Inside the House of Horrors: How Fred and Rose West killed 12 people and buried them in their Cromwell Street home
Fred and Rose West are believed to have killed at least 12 people, with most of the victims subject to rape and other forms of sexual torture before their eventual deaths.
The couple married at Gloucester Register Office in January 1972 and moved into a three-storey property at 25 Cromwell Street shortly afterwards.
It was here, in what was dubbed the ‘House of Horrors’, that the majority of their victims were found buried in the garden and cellar in 1994.
Rose and Fred’s first victim was teenager Lynda Gough, who the couple met through a male lodger in early 1973. Her body was found dismembered, with bones missing, in a pit beneath the couple’s garage in Gloucester.
A further five victims were murdered and buried in the cellar at Cromwell Street between November 1973 and April 1975.
The first of these victims, Carol Ann Cooper, 15, was abducted in November 1973. Cooper lived in the Pines Children’s Home in Worcester, and was kidnapped after spending the evening at a cinema with her boyfriend.
As had been the case with Lynda, Cooper died from strangulation or asphyxiation, before her body was dismembered and buried in a shallow, cubical grave in the cellar.
Four further victims, aged between 15 and 21, suffered a similar fate over the next 17 months.
Fred’s first wife Rena was also murdered aged 27 after her daughter Charmaine was killed in 1971.
It is understood Fred killed teenager Anne McFall, who was pregnant with his child, in July 1967. Her body was found in 1994 buried in a cornfield, with her limbs severed and several of her bones missing.
The pair also killed their daughter Heather in June 1987.
Their children began to come forward about the abuse they suffered at the hands of their parents in 1992.
Social services then started investigating Fred and Rose and later questioned Heather’s disappearance.
They were granted a search warrant for the Cromwell Road property in 1994 and Fred later confessed to the murder of his daughter.
Fred killed himself in prison in 1995 while awaiting trial on 12 murder charges.
His wife, 67, was sentenced to life in jail without parole for ten murders.