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  1. ITV Report

Deepcut Four: Profiles of soldiers who died at Surrey barracks

The Deepcut Four all died of gunshot wounds described as suicide by the Army. Credit: PA

Four young army recruits at Deepcut Barracks in Surrey all died from gunshot wounds over a seven year period.

The deaths were all explained as suicides by the Army but families of the four soldiers, who died between 1995 and 2002, disagreed.

After years of campaigning, the family of Private Cheryl James secured a fresh inquest into her death. Families of the other victims have called for further inquests and a public inquiry.

Here is a profile of the Deepcut Four:

  • Private Sean Benton
Private Benton died in June 1995 of five gunshot wounds. Credit: PA

Private Benton, 20, from Hastings in East Sussex was the first to die in June 1995. He was found at the barracks with five gunshot wounds while on guard at a perimeter fence.

His mother Linda has refuted the inquest's findings and the Army's claim that he committed suicide.

Ballistics expert Frank Swann said it was impossible for Private Benton to have killed himself, claiming he had been shot four times from a distance and once at close range.

  • Private Geoff Gray
Private Gray was found with two gunshot wounds to the head. Credit: PA

Aged 17, from Seaham in County Durham, Private Gray was found dead with two gunshot wounds to his head while on guard duty in September 2001.

The Army said he killed himself but an inquest into his death returned an open verdict.

His family have called for a public inquiry into the Deepcut deaths and a new inquest for their son.

  • Private James Collinson
Private Collinson, 17, died from a single gunshot wound through the chin. Credit: PA

17-year-old Private Collinson, from Perth, Scotland was found with a single gunshot wound through his chin in March 2002 while on guard duty.

His family described him as a "happy, cheerful young man" who had no reason to take his life. An inquest into his death returned an open verdict.

  • Private Cheryl James
A second inquest into Private James's death was opened earlier this year.

18-year-old Private James, from Llangollen, in north Wales, was found dead with a bullet wound to the head in woodland outside the barracks in November 1995.

The Army said it was suicide but an inquest recorded an open verdict.

Her parents Doreen and Des believed their daughter suffered sexual harassment and violence at Deepcut and evidence emerged that she may have been sexually exploited by senior ranks shortly before her death.

A second inquest was opened after High Court judges quashed the original verdict following a campaign by her family.

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