Open verdict on car crash barrister

THE CAUSE of a high-speed road crash which killed a Chester barrister remains unknown after East Clwyd coroner David Jones recorded an open verdict last week.

Trevor Halbert, 42, died after his BMW crashed into a tree on a straight section of the A541 near Mold, North Wales, on 30 April.

The car had been travelling at 65mph. It left no skid marks and was found to have suffered no vehicle defects.

The inquest, held in nearby Flint, was told Halbert had suffered great distress as a result of his Parkinson's Disease and had considered suicide in the days before the crash.

His chambers, Sedan House, where he specialised in crime, criminal child sex abuse cases and personal injury, declined to comment. He was described at the inquest as a “fearless advocate on behalf of others”.

His landlady, Catherine Stephenson-Gray, said Halbert had travelled to the Lake District to drown himself, but had returned in a “highly elated” state and had told her that he wanted to live.

Halbert was on bail at the time, having been charged with three counts relating to child indecency offences, although this was not presented in evidence at the inquest.

In his findings the coroner said he could not be certain that Halbert had intended to kill himself and therefore he recorded an open verdict.