Timeline to tragedy: Caroline Flack, her life and death

Timeline to tragedy: Caroline Flack, her life and death

Timeline to tragedy: Caroline Flack her life and death 

She was one of the UK’s most-loved TV presenters, the former Love Island host was just 40 when she died – here’s a timeline to the tragic end of her life.

Tonight, those who knew her best, open up about the life and death of Caroline Flack. 

December 12 2019: Caroline arrested for assaulting boyfriend

Caroline Flack was in a relationship with tennis player Lewis Burton. Lewis reportedly called 999 on December 12 2019 saying Caroline was attacking him.

On arrival at Caroline’s home, police found Lewis bleeding from a wound to his head.

He said Caroline had hit him with a lamp or desk fan. Caroline allegedly confessed “I did it” to police, and then warned she would kill herself.

She was arrested and taken into custody. 

December 13 2019: Star charged

Caroline was charged with assault by beating the next day. 

The 40-year-old faced a criminal trial over the allegation she had attacked her boyfriend Lewis while he was sleeping.

Reports say she feared he had been cheating on her.

In her police interview, Flack reportedly said she had a phone in her hand when she made contact with Lewis’ head. She insisted any injury was accidental.

December 17 2019:  Loses Love Island job

By December 17, Caroline stepped down from her ITV Love Island and spin-off show Love Island: Aftersun gigs. 

She announced she would not be hosting the sixth series due to the assault allegations against her.  She didn’t want to “detract attention from the upcoming series”.

Caroline had an impressive career – winning Strictly Come Dancing in 2014, The Xtra Factor host from 2011-2015 and her biggest job Love Island. 

She had a legion of fans and bagged a film role in Steve Coogan’s 2019 film Greed. 

Her fans had no clue that the presenter had secretly been suffering from mental health issues.

December 23 2019: Caroline appears in court

Caroline pleaded not guilty to the charges at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court on December 23 2019.

Her solicitor told the court that Lewis did not support the prosecution and that “he is not the victim, as he would say, he was a witness”.

Police released Caroline on bail with the condition that she did not contact Lewis.

She was due to stand trial on March 4 2020 but tragically did not survive to make the date. 

There were reports that the TV star had fears over going to prison and bodycam footage would be shown during her trial. 

According to The Sun, close friends suggested the Love Island star was suicidal over fears of the bodycam footage, which reportedly features her severely distressed and in a state of undress, being shown in court.

February 13 2020: Caroline’s last Instagram message

Ahead of Valentine’s Day 2020, Caroline returned to Instagram with a picture of her dog. 

On Christmas Eve 2019, she shared a message to her fans, after months of social media silence. 

She said: “Been advised not to go on social media but I wanted to say happy Christmas to everyone who has been so incredibly kind to me this year.

“This kind of scrutiny and speculation is a lot to take on for one person to take on their own.

“I’m a human being at the end of the day and I’m not going to be silenced when I have a story to tell and a life to keep going with.

“I’m taking some time out to get feeling better and learn some lessons from situations I’ve got myself into.

“I have nothing but love to give and best wishes for everyone.”

February 15 2020: Caroline Flack dies

Caroline was found dead at her home in North East London, on February 15 2020.

She was just 40 years old.

It is understood that Caroline took her own life when a friend who was staying with her went to the shop. Unable to get back into the flat, the friend raised the alarm. 

The lawyer for the family confirmed her death was a suicide. 

It is believed the day before her death she was informed that the Crown Prosecution Service was pursuing the trial, which Lewis did not support. 

Her family issued a statement saying: “We can confirm that our Caroline passed away today on February 15.

“We would ask that the press respect the privacy of the family at this difficult time.”

August 02 2020: Caroline Flack cause of death  

The coroner found that Caroline’s death was a suicide on August 2 2020 after a two-day hearing.

She had taken her own life after reportedly learning she would be prosecuted for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend.

We also learnt that she had suffered a long struggle with “fluctuating mental health” that was exacerbated by the stress of fame.

The TV presenter wrote “please let this court case be dropped” on a note discovered near her body at home the inquest revealed.

Inquest

Caroline Flack reportedly took a “small drug overdose” months before her death, the inquest heard.

Speaking at the inquest, Harley Street psychiatrist Dr Brian Wells shared a statement.

Mr Wells claimed on December 22 of 2020, Caroline’s management team informed him she had taken a “small drug overdose” in a London hotel.

Another note, written by Caroline at the end of January, added that she’d been having “some sort of emotional breakdown for a very long time”.

She insisted she was not a domestic abuser.

Friends and family gathered at a private funeral when Caroline was laid to rest on March 10 2020.

Caroline Flack her life and death

9 pm, Channel 4

“A moving examination of the toll of celebrity and our misunderstandings of mental health in this film from the late broadcaster Caroline Flack’s mother and twin sister. The pair give candid interviews and use home video footage of Flack’s childhood to trace her journey from drama school to presenting on some of the biggest shows on television, before her death in February 2020. Famous friends such as Dermot O’Leary also speak of the pressures Flack faced.”

The same papers that wrote all the horrible things about Carrie, after she died got in contact with me to say, oh we’d love to do a lovely article about her. And you think: what? I don’t understand this.” –  Christine flack 

If you or someone you know is struggling, help is available at Samaritans: call 116 123 for free or email jo@samaritans.org.

 

Caroline Flack death

Sunday Papers – Caroline Flack dead at 40 – ‘appalling, anger-inducing and more complicated than the media will admit’ 

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