Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Mum of suspected drug death teen Caitlin White says her 'heart is broken for ever'

By Claire Williamson

A mother has told of her pain after her 15-year-old daughter died in a suspected drugs-related incident.

Caitlin White passed away on Saturday shortly after being taken to Craigavon Area Hospital.

Emergency services responded to reports that she had fallen unconscious in Corcrain Community Woodland in Portadown  around 6pm.

The Craigavon Senior High School pupil had been out with a group of friends who regularly gather in the newly-developed area owned by the Woodland Trust.

Police investigating the death have arrested three teenagers aged 19, 17 and 15.

On Wednesday morning, a PSNI spokesperson said that the 19-year-old had been released pending enquiries. The 17-year-old remains in police custody.

Caitlin’s devastated mum Teresa told the Belfast Telegraph: “She was my world and they took her away from me.

“My heart is broken for ever.”

The teenager was due to sit one of her GCSE exams yesterday. The school confirmed that it would be going ahead with the test as scheduled.

In a statement it said it would be providing support to pupils.

“This is a tragic loss to the pupil’s family and to our school community,” it said.

“In response, the school has implemented a plan which will give pupils the opportunity to talk through their thoughts and feelings with trained staff from the Education Authority critical incident response team.

“A letter will be sent by the school to parents, informing them of this tragic incident and providing information on the support services available through the school.

“Given that GCSE examinations are continuing, we will endeavour to keep the school operating as normally as possible under the circumstances.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the pupil’s family and friends at this very sad time.”

Friends of the teenager have left flowers and messages at the scene of her collapse.

Meanwhile, residents have described how youths had been  congregating in the area recently.

And a local youth worker said in the wake of the weekend tragedy he had been contacted by young people wishing to undertake a drugs and alcohol awareness course.

Jordan Russell told the BBC: “If we had a facility where we could take these young people on a Friday night and Saturday night, to a facility where we could educate them — they have absolutely nothing. They seriously need educated; children don’t know the problems and everything that goes on.”

Chief Inspector Joe McMinn confirmed that one line of enquiry was “a possible link to drugs”.

A post-mortem examination will be carried out to determine the exact cause of Caitlin’s death.

Belfast Telegraph

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph