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Mephedrone made my son kill himself, says distraught mum

A mother whose son hanged himself after taking mephedrone has begged young people not to wreck their lives by taking the so-called legal high.

Lee Campbell, who would have celebrated his 18th birthday in three weeks’ time, was found hanged in the attic of his Newtownabbey home by his mother Shirley. He had experimented with the legal drug in recent months.

In an interview, to be broadcast on Radio Ulster’s Stephen Nolan show this morning, Mrs Campbell also pleads with retailers to stop selling mephedrone.

“If they saw what I walked into ... a 17-year-old child hanging from his own attic in his own home — they need to be ashamed of themselves,” she tells the show.

Mephedrone has the same effects as a Class A drug — yet it is legal and widely available.

It has claimed the lives of several young people in England and the Government's chief drugs advisor hinted it could be banned and reclassified as a Class B drug.

Mrs Campbell said her son’s behaviour changed dramatically after he began using mephedrone a couple of months before he died.

“There was a mass loss of weight,” she added. “His eyes went very, very deep. When he looked at you he looked through you. His face started to distort to one side.

In his last few days, Lee hugged his parents and said he loved them.

Then, on March 15 last, she returned home to find her son dead.

“As I was driving up to the house, I saw his bedroom light on. I knew something wasn’t right,” she added. “I went in and called out ‘Lee’, There was no answer. I walked up the stairs very, very slowly.

“I don’t know where I got the strength, but I got up the extra couple of steps and I saw my son hanging. I just squealed and squealed and squealed..”

She said of mephedrone: “It’s putting children into a coffin.”

Her plea came as another Ulster mum told how her son had died after taking mephedrone.

Frances Finn's son Michael Malone (23) and due to become a father to triplets, was found dead in a friend's house in February.

“It was his birthday recently. He would have been 24. Instead of having a party I'd to go up to the cemetery,” she told UTV. “I just wanted to dig him up. I wanted to hug him and tell him everything was all right.”

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