Peterborough mum killed sons then herself

Susan Talby, 42, and her son Paul (Pic: Cambridgeshire Police/PA)
Image caption Susan Talby, from Peterborough, killed her sons Paul (pictured) and Joseph

A mother killed her two sons and then took her own life while the "balance of her mind was disturbed", a coroner at Peterborough Town Hall has ruled.

Susan Talby, 42, and her two sons Joseph, four, and Paul, two, were found dead in their home in the Werrington area of Peterborough in March 2007.

The inquest heard she left a suicide note which read: "I love the children and I cannot leave them behind."

Peterborough coroner Gordon Ryall said the two boys were unlawfully killed.

He said that if Mrs Talby had survived she would have been charged with voluntary manslaughter not murder.

Mrs Talby and her children were found by her husband Richard.

'Delusional and homicidal'

Mrs Talby had suffered severe post-natal depression and became convinced the boys suffered from a range of allergies and diseases, despite being fit and healthy, the inquest heard.

The inquest heard the note, addressed to "Rich", read: "I am truly, truly sorry. I have tried with every ounce in my body to get over this depression but the pain is unbearable.

"I always loved you. You never hurt me and you put up with a lot."

A statement read by Peterborough Coroner Gordon Ryall on behalf of Mr Talby said that before the deaths he was the "happiest man alive".

Earlier the inquest heard that Mrs Talby's medical notes showed she had threatened to kill herself and harm the children as early as 2005.

She was admitted to nearby Edith Cavell Hospital as an in-patient suffering from depression shortly after this threat.

However, a note which outlined her condition and her previous "delusional, suicidal and homicidal" thoughts never reached her health worker.

When she was discharged she was diagnosed with a moderate depressive episode with no enduring risk to her children, meaning alert systems were not triggered.

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