A father-of-two who had “everything to look forward to" took his own life by running into an on-coming car seconds after failing a roadside breath test, a court has been told.

At an inquest into the death of Darren Rawthorn, a jury was told how the 38-year-old had been pulled over by a police patrol car on the A47 at Hockering on September 14 last year. 

After failing a roadside breath test for alcohol, he became “upset and very emotional” and within 10 seconds of the result, had run into an Audi driving at around 50mph. 

Both on and off duty medical professionals gave Mr Rawthorn CPR at the scene, before he was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital

He was later transferred to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, where he died four weeks later, on October 12. 

Eastern Daily Press: Norfolk Coroner's CourtNorfolk Coroner's Court (Image: Newsquest)

In a statement from Mr Rawthorn’s wife, Emma, read out during the three-day inquest at Norfolk Coroner’s Court, she described him as her "best friend”. 

“Losing Darren has turned my world upside down," she said.

“I don’t know what the future will be like without him in it.  

“Life will never be the same.” 

The court in Norwich also heard how Mr Rawthorn, of Elm, near Wisbech, was an avid Norwich City fan and could “kick a ball as soon as he could walk”.

He was heading home from a game at Carrow Road on the evening of the tragedy.

Mrs Rawthorn, who married her husband in 2015 before having two children together, added: “Darren was always the life and soul of the party. 

“He was very sociable and loved being around people, having fun. 

“I knew Darren better than anyone else and I know he was not suicidal and did not have any intention to end his life.

“He loved his children more than life itself and he loved me and the life we had. 

“I know he was running from a situation that he couldn’t face and was not thinking rationally about what to do or how to handle himself.” 

The medical cause of death was traumatic brain injury with diffuse axonal injury, following pedestrian being hit by a car. 

A majority jury concluded that Mr Rawthorn died by “suicide while suffering extreme distress”.