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Warnings, treatment and information about the dangers of gambling were ‘woefully inadequate' before a young English teacher tragically killed himself, a coroner has concluded

by Jerold Coppola (2022-03-26)


Warnings, treatment and information about the dangers of gambling were ‘woefully inadequate' before a young English teacher tragically killed himself, a coroner has concluded.

Jack Ritchie, 24, IDHOKI88 Indonesia died in Vietnam in November 2017 after years of gambling problems which started when he began using fixed odds betting terminals aged 17, a two-week inquest in Sheffield has heard.

Forensic evidence presented to the inquest showed the Hull University graduate was a regular visitor to the BetVictor online gambling website in the days leading up to his death in Hanoi.

Sheffield coroner David Urpeth has ruled that ‘gambling contributed to Jack's death', calling the case a ‘stark reminder of the terrible consequences that can flow from an addiction to gambling'.

Jack's parents, Liz and Charles Ritchie, believe that failures on the part of UK authorities to address gambling issues contributed to their son's death.

On Friday, Mr Urpeth said in a narrative conclusion that information about the dangers of gambling were available at the time of Jack's death, as was some treatment.

But he said: ‘Such warnings, information and treatment were woefully inadequate and failed to meet Jack's needs.' Mr Urpeth told the hearing: ‘Sadly, this addiction spiralled out of control and led to his suicide.'  

Jack Ritchie, 24, died in Vietnam in November 2017 after years of gambling problems

Undated handout photo issued by Gambling With Lives of Jack Ritchie at his graduation with his parents Charles and Liz Ritchie

Sheffield coroner David Urpeth has ruled that ‘gambling contributed to Jack's death'