Drug dealer guilty of Bestival drug death manslaughter of actor’s daughter
A drug dealer has been convicted of the manslaughter of the daughter of Holby City actor John Michie after he “bumped up” her dose of a so-called party drug then filmed her as she suffered an extreme reaction.
Rapper Ceon Broughton, 30, of Enfield, north London, was also found guilty at Winchester Crown Court of supplying his girlfriend Louella Fletcher-Michie with the drug 2-CP before her death at the Bestival music festival.
The defendant showed no emotion as the verdicts were announced by the foreman of the jury and the court received the announcement in silence.
Broughton sat down with his hands held together in front of his face as the judge, Mr Justice Goose, said he intended to sentence him on Friday. He then asked his lawyer to text his mother.
Ms Fletcher-Michie, a yoga and dance teacher, took the hallucinogenic drug at Bestival in Dorset on September 10, 2017, and died in woodland an hour before her 25th birthday.
The prosecution said Broughton failed to take “reasonable” steps to seek medical help for Miss Fletcher-Michie.
The jury was shown videos taken by the defendant as her condition worsened – and possibly after she had died.
In clips shown to the court, Miss Fletcher-Michie repeatedly shouts at Broughton to telephone her mother, Carol Fletcher-Michie, but he tells her to “put your phone away”.
Her mother eventually contacted Broughton at 6.48pm and heard her daughter “screeching” before she rushed with her husband to the festival site in a bid to find her daughter.
Prosecutor William Mousley QC claimed Broughton did not get help because he was handed a suspended jail term one month earlier and feared the consequences.
He said that Broughton had given the drugs to Miss Fletcher-Michie and therefore had a duty of care to look after her.
Miss Fletcher-Michie was found dead by a security steward in the woodland, 400m from the festival’s hospital tent, at about 1am.
A post-mortem examination found “2-CP toxicity” and traces of ketamine and MDMA.
Professor Charles Deakin, a consultant in cardiac anaesthesia and intensive care, told the court that she had a 90% chance of survival if she had been given medical help.
But Stephen Kamlish QC, defending, said that the expert witness had acknowledged that she might not have survived even with medical help.
He added that Broughton, who denied supplying the drugs, had felt unable to leave his girlfriend alone in the woods while she was suffering a “bad trip” and he had not realised she was at risk of death.
He said Broughton had sought help through text messages and sending his GPS position through the mobile phone app Google Maps.
Broughton, who performs under the artist name CEONRPG and has recorded music with Skepta, previously pleaded guilty to supplying 2-CP to Miss Fletcher-Michie and another person at the Glastonbury Festival earlier in 2017.
In a statement released through Mr Michie’s agent shortly after his daughter’s death, the family said: “Our hearts are broken by this horrific tragedy.
“Louella inspired all who knew her with her joy of life.”
Ex-Coronation Street and Taggart actor Mr Michie, 62, and his wife Carol – a former Hot Gossip singer – have two other children, Daisy and Sam.
Speaking outside, Mr Michie said: “Regardless of the outcome of this harrowing trial, there were never going to be any winners.
“We began our life sentence on what would have been Louella’s 25th birthday. Ceon’s life sentence is knowing he didn’t help Louella to live.”
Towards the end of the trial, Mr Michie confronted Broughton, who declined to give evidence during the case, in a court waiting area and called the defendant “evil”.
Miss Fletcher-Michie’s sister Daisy also told him: “All we wanted from you was an apology.”
Broughton was then seen to lose his temper and he damaged a table and a water cooler.