independent

Saturday 19 April 2014

Mother tribute to party death youth

Charlie Barker, 18, died after apparently taking an illegal drug at a party

The mother of an 18-year-old who died after apparently taking an illegal drug at a party has said his "smile lit up any room he entered".

Trudy Barker, whose son, Charlie Barker, is thought to have inhaled an unknown substance, said their family was "lost without him".

Surrey Police have said that the teenager, from the Wrecclesham area of Farnham, is believed to have taken a drug at a gathering on Chobham Common on Saturday night.

A post-mortem examination was inconclusive and police are awaiting the results of toxicology tests.

Paying tribute to her son, Ms Barker said in a statement issued via police: "Charlie, even as a child, was confident and warm. In adulthood he grew to become a thoughtful, artistic and caring young man. He worked hard at the fish and chip shop while studying at Farnham College.

"Both at his place of work and at college, he was loved by all, his smile lit up any room he entered. Everyone who met Charlie was touched by his thoughtfulness and caring attitude towards others.

"As a family we are lost without him, our hearts are broken. He will never be forgotten and will live on in the hearts of all he became dear to."

Two people, a 20-year-old man from Gloucester and an 18-year-old woman from Bristol, were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and supplying controlled drugs. They were later released on police bail to attend Woking police station on March 9.

Mr Barker's death prompted an urgent warning by police to others who were at the party and may have taken a substance sold as 2C-I or 2C-E to seek medical help if they feel unwell.

A police spokesman said: "The circumstances leading up to the sudden death are being investigated by Surrey Police which was made aware by the South East Coast Ambulance Service at 10.15am on Sunday February 24."

Press Association

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