Army cadet Olivia Perks, 19, found hanged after 'gross sexual misconduct' by senior Sandhurst officers, inquest hears | The Sun

A YOUNG Army cadet was found hanged at Sandhurst after falling victim to "gross sexual misconduct" by officers, an inquest heard.

Olivia Perks, 21, was discovered in her bedroom at the elite military training school in Berkshire on February 6, 2019.

A pre-inquest review was told alleged sexual misconduct against her was "clearly" on her mind before she died.

Sandhurst, which was attended by Prince William and Prince Harry, forbids personal relationships with officer cadets.

Mike Rawlinson, representing Olivia's mum Louise Townsend, said: "Her family are of course very concerned about sexual misconduct committed against her by senior military officers.

"It was clearly something on Olivia's mind in her last few days.

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"We would seek to put questions to witnesses that arise out of our concern there was gross sexual misconduct by senior officers towards her."

The Ministry of Defence accepted this would form part of the full inquest when it goes ahead from April 24.

Two sergeants have been named as "interested parties", which means they have been appointed by a Government department to attend and provide evidence.

They are Colour Sergeant Griffith and Staff Sergeant Easingwood – but it is not clear what the nature of their relationship was to cadet officer Olivia.

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The hearing was told Olivia had made a "significant" suicide attempt before she died during a Royal Engineers visit.

A "series of red flags" about her mental health had also been raised.

The Royal Engineers visit will be one of three events explored as well as a trip to Normandy and the Falklands Ball on February 1, 2019.

How Olivia's "alcohol consumption" was managed will also be considered, the coroner ruled.

Assistant Coroner for Berkshire Alison McCormick said she hoped to hold a "full, fair and fearless" inquest.

If you are affected by any of the issues raised in this article, please call the Samaritans for free on 116123.

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