Saturday, 10 April 2021

Emily parents criticise university over daughter’s suicide

Emily Drouet 1

LONDON: The family of a student who took her own life after suffering abuse says she might be alive today if the University of Aberdeen had offered a “basic duty of care”. Emily Drouet, 18, killed herself at her Aberdeen halls of residence in March 2016 following weeks of verbal, physical and psychological abuse by her student boyfriend.

Emily Drouet 2Emily suffered weeks of physical, verbal and psychological abuse by Angus Milligan

Angus Milligan, 21, pleaded guilty last Tuesday to three charges of assaulting Emily in the months leading up to her death. Emily’s mother Fiona told: “He’s evil to the core. We want to make sure he doesn’t damage our family any more than he already has but he’s taken our daughter. He destroyed our daughter.”

Emily bore signs of physical harm by Milligan when she consulted a student resident assistant (SRA) at Aberdeen University a week before she killed herself. They suspected she was being abused but didn’t intervene. Neither the police nor Emily’s parents were contacted.

Emily Drouet -MILLIGANMilligan pleaded guilty last Tuesday to several charges of assaulting Emily

The university says Emily denied she was being subjected to violence, but her family says she told the SRA she “didn’t want to get him (Milligan) into trouble”. Emily’s family told that while they hold Milligan alone responsible for their daughter’s death, the university could have done more to prevent it.

Mrs Drouet said: “We’re shocked. Why, when the university experienced him screaming and shouting abuse at Emily – as far as we’re aware that was the first incident – they just told him to shut up, sent him back to his room, sent Emily to her room without any concern for her care… after she’d just been verbally abused in a really aggressive way, so aggressive that the whole halls heard it.

“Why were we not informed, because that was her in a vulnerable position. A crime had been committed and we weren’t told. We’re her next of kin and she’d just turned 18.

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