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February 19, 2020updated 07 Nov 2023 5:42am

Caroline Flack’s family choose local paper to share TV star’s message written days before death

By Freddy Mayhew

Caroline Flack’s family has chosen to release one of her final messages through their local newspaper, the Eastern Daily Press in Norfolk.

The Love Island presenter and Strictly winner was found dead in her London flat on Saturday having taken her own life aged 40.

She faced an allegation that she had violently abused boyfriend Lewis Burton, which was due to be put before a judge next month.

In a message written days before she died, but which she was advised not to share on social media, Flack denied domestic abuse and talked of having had “some sort of emotional breakdown”.

She added: “We had an argument and an accident happened. An accident. The blood that someone sold to a newspaper was my blood and that was something very sad and very personal.”

She appeared to be referring to a front page story in the Sun showing blood on a bed following the alleged attack on Burton.

The message has now been published in full by the EDP, which is owned by regional publisher Archant.

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Flack’s mother Christine, who works for Archant in Norfolk, told the paper: “It was describing how she was feeling and what she had gone through – no more than that. It was not blaming anyone or pointing any fingers.

“We want people to read it and want it to be shared through the EDP who we really trust and always have done.”

EDP editor David Powles said in a tweet that head of news Ian Clarke had “spent many hours on the phone” to Christine ahead of publishing the story, to “make [sure] she was happy with our tone and approach”.

The tabloid press has come under fire this week for its coverage of Flack prior to her death, with some claiming news reports had contributed to her mental anguish.

A petition calling for “new and stricter laws around safeguarding celebrities and people in the public eye” has been signed by more than half-a-million people since it was set up in the wake of Flack’s death.

Yesterday the Society of Editors, which represents senior editorial staff in the UK, said it is “wrong to blame the media” for her death.

There have also been calls for urgent regulation of social media, with proposed new legislation to establish a code of conduct and an online regulator still yet to reach the UK Parliament, as Flack had faced abuse from trolls.

The star’s management blamed prosecutors for pursuing a criminal case against her despite appeals from Flack and her boyfriend. She learned it would go to trial the day before her suicide.

Call the Samaritans 24/7 free helpline on 116123 or visit

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