Cop in Leeds tower block death plunge

Samantha Pape.

Samantha Pape.

  • by Stuart Robinson

A young aspiring police officer plunged seven stories to her death from her secret girlfriend’s Leeds flat.

But an inquest into the death of popular 19-year-old Samantha Pape was told it remained a mystery how she had come to fall from the balcony at Norman Towers, West Park.

Wakefield Coroner’s Court heard that Samantha, of Holt Farm Close, Holt Park, Leeds, had spent the evening of October 14 drinking in the city centre along with her friend Leanne Covey.

Miss Pape, who had recently become a Special Constable with West Yorkshire Police, had been in a relationship with 32-year-old Miss Covey for some time, but had not told her family, the court heard.

After visiting the New Penny pub, the pair travelled by taxi back to Miss Covey’s flat at Norman Towers.

Arriving back just before 4.30am, they sat up in the living room of the flat for a short time.

Giving evidence yesterday, Miss Covey said she had gone into the kitchen of her flat and returned to the room to find her balcony door open and no sign of Miss Pape.

Miss Covey rang the emergency services and the court heard a transcript of the 999 call, in which she repeatedly told the operator that she dare not look over the balcony to see if Miss Pape was there.

She told the operator: “She (Miss Pape) just opened the door and said that she’d had enough. I didn’t think she would.”

Yesterday Miss Covey told the court she could not recall what she had said during the call and that she had no recollection of any arguments or of Miss Pape being upset.

Police and the ambulance service arrived at the scene and found Miss Pape lying on the grass underneath the balcony area.

She had suffered multiple injuries and was pronounced dead just after 5.15am on October 15.

Assistant Deputy Coroner Mary Burke recorded a narrative verdict which said investigations had found Miss Pape’s death not to be suspicious.

She added: “It has not been possible to know what Sam’s thoughts and intentions were at the time she entered onto the balcony.”

A statement after the inquest on behalf of Miss Pape’s family said: “Sam was a wonderful person with a vibrant, loving personality and an infectious smile.

“She had everything to live for and a bright future ahead of her.

“She had recently passed out as a Special Constable with West Yorkshire Police and was hoping to become a regular officer in the future.

“This has been a very difficult time her family and we are devastated by her untimely death.”


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