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Former councillor killed himself days after being arrested on suspicion of sex assault

Credit: MEN Syndication

A former Rochdale councillor killed himself days after being arrested on suspicion of sexual assault, an inquest heard.

Jonathan Burns, 33, who represented the North Middleton ward for almost seven years until stepping down last year, was a successful entrepreneur and was described as a ‘great community champion’.

But on January 16 this year, the dad-of-one was arrested over an alleged sexual assault and bailed.

But seven days later,Mr Burn was found hanged in the kitchen of his company premises.

The Manchester Evening News reported that officers who attended Pride Media Association, the company which Mr Burns founded helping people learn IT and media skills, retrieved eight hand-written letters intended for various members of his family and friends, it was said.

Following a hearing at Heywood Coroners Court where he recorded a conclusion of suicide, coroner Simon Nelson said it is sad that young men found it difficult to ‘open up to others’.