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Bestival death: accused man 'vacant' when questioned, court hears

A musician accused of the manslaughter of an actor’s daughter at a festival initially appeared “dazed and vacant” when he was questioned by staff over what had happened, a jury has been told.

Ceon Broughton told Bestival staff that Louella Fletcher-Michie had got cold and was ill, and only said she had taken the drug 2C-P after being pressed.

The prosecution alleges Broughton did not immediately seek help for Fletcher-Michie, the 24-year-old daughter of the Holby City actor John Michie, because he feared he would be in trouble. Broughton, 29, denies manslaughter and supplying drugs.

A log kept by one of the event’s managers, Andrew McGrory, was read to the jury at Winchester crown court. McGrory noted he met Broughton at 12.35am on 11 September 2017.

“He was dazed and vacant, and appeared to be under the influence, but not really agitated,” the log read.

“I asked where he had last seen his girlfriend and he said in the woods. I asked what they were doing and got no response. Then he volunteered she was not well.

“I asked him if she was OK and got no response. I asked if she was breathing; he said yes. He said she was cold and he had given her his coat.

“I said ‘Cut to the chase’ and asked had they taken drugs. He said they had taken 2C-P. I realised this could be much worse than a missing girl.”

Giving evidence, PC Christopher Harrison recalled how he had raced to try to help the young woman. Her father and her mother, Carol Fletcher-Michie, had driven 130 miles to the site in Dorset from their home in London after hearing their daughter “screeching” on the phone.

“En route to the scene, we saw the father of the deceased,” Harrison said. “He called out to us, but the security staff tried to dismiss him because we were going to an emergency.

“He called out ‘My daughter’, and I said to him that was where we were going. When we got there she was on her back. She had a lot of bramble marks all over her hands.

“I found [her] phone on the floor with a cracked screen but it had no battery life. It was sort of towards her feet, in the mud. I think it might have been trodden on.”

The trial continues.

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