Costessey deaths: Coroner fights back tears as inquests opened into family's four deaths

Kanticha Sukpengpanao, left, was found dead alongside the body of Bartlomiej Kuczynski and his two daughters.
Credit: Facebook

A visibly moved coroner fought back tears as she opened inquests into the deaths of two girls, their father and their aunt, who were found stabbed in their necks at a house near Norwich.

The bodies of Bartlomiej Kuczynski, 45, Kanticha Sukpengpanao, 36, Jasmin Kuczynska, 12, and eight-year-old Natasha Kuczynska were discovered at an address in Allan Bedford Crescent in Costessey on 19 January.

Norfolk area coroner Samantha Goward appeared to begin to cry as she first opened the inquest into Natasha’s death, before apologising and reaching for a tissue.

The coroner told Wednesday’s hearing in Norwich that Natasha was a school pupil and her body, like those of the other three, was identified in hospital by her neighbour of two-and-a-half years, Louise Smith.

Natasha’s provisional medical cause of death was recorded as “sharp force injuries of the neck”.

The coroner said Jasmin, who was also a school pupil, died of an “incised wound of the neck”.

Flowers near the home where four members of the same family were found dead. Credit: PA

She said that structural engineer Mr Kuczynski, who was born in Poland, died of a “stab wound to the neck” and was found at his home address.

The coroner said that a report had been requested from the mental health trust.

Ms Goward said that businesswoman Ms Sukpengpanao, who lived in Thailand, died of “stab wounds to the neck”.

All four of the inquests, which were opened separately, were adjourned until a pre-inquest review hearing on 29 April.

Norfolk Police said the deaths of Ms Sukpengpanao, Jasmin and Natasha are being treated as murder.

The death of Mr Kuczynski is not being treated as suspicious, and officers are not looking for anyone else in connection with the killings, the force said.

Norfolk Police has referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), and the watchdog said it has started an independent investigation into contact the force had with the man prior to the deaths.

The IOPC has previously said that during a 999 call made by Mr Kuczynski an hour before the bodies were discovered, he had raised concerns for his own mental state and appeared to be "confused".

He was advised to seek medical advice and officers did not attend.

Police spent several days at the address as they carried out their investigations. Credit: PA

An hour later, at 7am, a dog walker passing the house called police after becoming concerned for those within.

IOPC regional director Charmaine Arbouin said: “Officers attended shortly after and, tragically, found the man, a woman and two children dead.

“Following a mandatory referral from the force we have decided to investigate and will be examining if the force’s handling of the contact they had with the man was appropriate and in line with force policy, training and procedures.”

The deaths have put the spotlight on the planned implementation of a new policy for officers not to answer mental health-related 999 calls.

The Right Care, Right Person policy would see people signposted to mental health services instead, but was not in place at the time of Mr Kuczynski's call to police.

It has been criticised by mental health campaigners, who argue that the safety net is not strong enough to replace the services being withdrawn by police.

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