Jeremy Kyle declared an ‘interested party’ at Steve Dymond inquest
The family of Stephen Dymond have asked for Jeremy Kyle files to be released by ITV
Jeremy Kyle has been declared an "interested party" at an inquest into the suspected suicide of a guest on his show after a coroner ruled the presenter's actions may have "caused or contributed" to his death.
Construction worker Steve Dymond said the presenter got "in his face", jeered him and called him a failure after he failed a lie detector test on the axed show.
He collapsed in tears afterwards, slumped to his hands and knees fearing he was going to pass out, tried to flee the studio to escape the audiences' boos and said he wished he was dead.
In a 15-minute phone call to his brother on the way home he said he wanted to leap out of the taxi or take a morphine overdose.
Seven days later the 63-year-old was found dead from a morphine overdose in his rented home in Portsmouth.
Jeremy Kyle, pictured,
His death led to the scrapping of the TV show after a 14-year run.
At a pre-inquest hearing in Winchester, Hants, coroner Jason Pegg said he had declared Kyle an "interested party" because evidence suggested his actions "may have caused or contributed to the death".
Kyle is represented by Neil Sheldon QC at the hearing.
The inquest has heard previously Mr Dymond went on the show despite a doctor ruling he had a "concrete plan" to kill himself.
Six weeks before he appeared he was referred to an acute mental health team by his GP who judged he had "recurrent' suicidal thoughts and there was a "real and immediate risk" to his life.
He had twice previously taken overdoses and medics ruled he had a "borderline personality disorder" following the break-up of his relationship with fiancee Jane Callaghan, 48.
Steve Dymond, pictured,
But he still made it on to The Jeremy Kyle Show where he took a lie detector test in the hope it would convince Jane he had not cheated on her.
When it showed he was lying he collapsed sobbing to the studio floor and after filming finished told a researcher he was "really upset" and "life's nothing without Jane".
Caoilfhionn Gallagher QC, representing Steve's family, has claimed the show failed to adequately safeguard `vulnerable' Steve and "public confidence" had been rocked by the scandal.
"Mr Dymond was extremely distressed by his experience at The Jeremy Kyle Show, a programme which has been described by a judge when sentencing a former contestant as "human bear-baiting",'' she said.
"Following his death the show was axed and widespread concerns were raised regarding the format of the show, its selection and treatment of participants, and aftercare.''
Jeremy Kyle as the host of The Jeremy Kyle Show
The family wants the coroner to conduct a jury inquest to examine in detail Steve's care in the seven-week period leading up to his death.
"It is clear from the records that at this time Mr Dymond had suicidal ideation, his suicidal thoughts were recurrent and they were accompanied by a concrete plan as to how to do it,'' she said.
Referring him for acute mental health care his GP said Steve had a "history of overdosing in 1995 and 2002' and had been "depressed for four to six weeks, split up with his partner, currently living in a B&B, not eating, not sleeping" with "suicidal thoughts".
But the acute team in turn referred him to a community mental health unit and there had been `no evidence' his case had been followed up.
Jeremy Kyle during an appearance on Loose Women
(Image: Ken McKay/ITV/REX/Shutterstock)
Ms Gallagher told the hearing before he went on the show Mr Dymond had "suicidal thoughts" and a "concrete plan on how to do it".
After his appearance she said one member of Kyle's backroom team sent a WhatsApp message to another saying Mr Dymond was "still crying", adding: "He just said: 'I want to die'."
Ms Gallagher said afterwards on "multiple" occasions Mr Dymond said he found his experience on the show "horrendous".
Mr Dymond said he was "disgusted" by the way Kyle had spoken to him on the show.In one suicide note he said he had "pushed and pushed" to go on the show to "prove" to his partner he had not cheated
But he said it "all went wrong because I lied in my lead up questions".
"I was ashamed of my past and I just wanted to leave it all behind,'' he wrote.Mr Sheldon said it was a "matter of fact" that Mr Dymond found his experience on the show upsetting.
He said it was not necessary for the coroner to call the individual employees of ITV involved as witnesses to establish that.
The coroner said it would seem "ludicrous to me not to give Mr Kyle the opportunity" to respond to witness accounts of Mr Dymond's criticism of him.
Jeremy Kyle's show was axed last year
(Image: Getty Images)
Ms Gallagher said Mr Dymond told his brother Lesley after he flunked the lie detector test on the show the audience had "booed him".
"Jeremy Kyle had been in his face,'' Ms Gallagher said.
"He was followed, jeered at and called a failure by the presenter.''
Mr Dymond was followed off set by cameras and tried to leave the studio but found a door locked.
"He could not escape the jeering,'' said Ms Gallagher.
"He was on his hands and knees and thought he was going to pass out.
"He felt worthless and could not face life any more.''
Lesley spent 15 minutes on the phone trying to talk his brother out of taking his own life as he travelled home from the show in a taxi.
Over the next four days Mr Dymond phoned his family four times a day expressing his anguish.He then went "off radar''.
His body was found three days later.
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Ms Gallagher said Mr Dymond's family did not want the coroner to conduct a "public inquiry into reality TV in general".
But they do want him to look at the circumstances that may have contributed to his death including his "treatment by Mr Kyle, how he was dealt with on the show, his selection, the risk assessment and aftercare or lack thereof which was provided".
She said Mr Kyle mentioned in the footage from the show – which has never been broadcast – that Mr Dymond had stopped taking anti-depressant medication "to go on the show".Kyle has said in a statement to the hearing: "I did not behave in a goading manner or an inappropriate manner at all.''
The coroner has ruled that Mr Dymond's engagement with Jeremy Kyle will be examined by the inquest.
He said Mr Dymond "did report to others that he was caused distress by his treatment by the show".
The coroner said that "played out" into the following week leading up to his death.
"To not deal with it would be ludicrous,'' he said.
He said Mr Kyle would be called to give evidence as a witness.
The family had agreed not to seek a jury inquest due to Covid-19 risks.
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