'Model pupil’, 18, died just 48 hours after arriving at uni ‘taking dodgy drugs’ offered at wild curfew parties
A TRAGIC student died just 48 hours after arriving at uni when "dodgy" drugs were offered at wild lockdown parties due to the 10pm curfew.
Jeni Larmour, 18, from County Armagh, was found dead in her halls at Newcastle University on Saturday.
The "model pupil", who was studying Architecture and Urban Planning, was one of four deaths over the weekend believed to be linked to illegal drugs.
An 18-year-old girl in the same halls of residence as Jeni was found dead on Sunday with both students found with Class B drug ketamine nearby.
There are now fears Jeni could have taken a "bad batch" of drugs offered around the student village during Freshers week, The Times reports.
Classmates claim students are turning to drugs amid wild parties due to the 10pm curfew for pubs in the UK.
One said: "Lockdown hasn’t helped the situation. The pubs close at 10pm and people have been going back to their flat in halls to continue the party, which is what I heard happened here.
“We’re not having what would be a normal Freshers experience and some people are compensating for that. It’s so sad and I feel really bad for her parents.
"I haven’t sought out or been offered drugs but I know they’d be easy to come by. I’ve heard people are buying them through Snapchat and Whatsapp.”
Police have issued an urgent drug warning following Jeni and the 18-year-old girl's deaths on Saturday and Sunday.
They said an 18-year-old man, who was not a student, was discovered dead on Saturday at around 3.50pm.
A 21-year-old male Northumbria University student died on Sunday – with MDMA found close to both.
The university has the largest campus coronavirus outbreak so far with almost 800 students infected.
'NO ONE IS LISTENING'
Adam Wallis, 21, who is studying Cyber Security at Northumbria University, told ChronicleLive: "It's pretty bad but it's expected with all the parties.
"It's awful that this has happened but we are all taught the same thing, 'don't do drugs'.
"With Covid everyone has to behave differently and people are spending more time inside which is annoying some of them. It doesn't bother me, but a lot of people come here to go out."
While Holly Conlin, 19, who is studying English Literature and Language, said: "Last night there was a massive party. There must have been about 20 people in the flat, it was horrific.
"The party lasted until around 3.30am in the morning. We were going to call the police. No one is listening to the rules. It's really worrying, it's awful."
Jeni was declared dead in the Park View student village at around 6am on Saturday.
Tributes have now flooded in for the teen, including from her heartbroken mum Sandra Foster Larmour.
She said: "My beautiful Princess my best friend x".
Jeni attended the Royal School Armagh and was a Combined Cadet Force member.
Her former school, where Jeni was a deputy head girl, paid tribute to the "model pupil".
They told how she was a student leader at an international summer school last year and a "highly valued" member of the choir with a "beautiful singing voice".
Headmaster Graham Montgomery said: "She was part of the highly successful Combined Cadet Force ‘mil skills’ team and she worked closely with younger cadets to encourage them to develop their skills.
“In October 2019 Jeni was part of the school’s signature charity project, the ASHA team which spent 10 days in the Trilok Puri slum in New Delhi. This trip required significant commitment and was the culmination of a year of fundraising activity by Jeni and the other team members.”
Mr Montgomery said Jeni was a "spirited and independently minded girl" who helped drive a green initiative on the school council.
He added: “We have no doubt, that given her academic ability and personality, Jeni had a bright future ahead of her and we are saddened that has been so suddenly cut short.
"We extend to her many friends, her family, brother and parents our sincerest sympathy at this tragic time and assure them of our prayers and practical support.”
A total of ten people arrested in connection with the four teens' deaths have since been released on bail.
A police spokesman said that specialist officers are supporting the families of those involved.
Although the causes of the deaths have not been confirmed, officers said they wanted to warn the public about the danger of taking drugs.
Chief Inspector Steve Wykes said: “This weekend we have seen the tragic loss of four young lives and our thoughts continue to be with the family and friends of those who have sadly died.
“Although our investigations are at an early stage and we continue to establish the circumstances around these tragedies, we want to reiterate our warning to people against taking drugs for recreational use.
“The consequences could cost you your life.
“We will continue to work with both universities and will be increasing our patrols in the areas where these tragedies have occurred.”
Newcastle University said it had written to every student and followed up with another email warning about the dangers of drugs.
They added: "Students who are found with illegal substances are subject to disciplinary procedures ranging from fines to expulsion from the University. "
A Northumbria University spokesman said: "We are supporting all those students who are self-isolating, providing them with food and other essential items, as well as welfare support including 24/7 online mental health support and one-to-one support from our well-being teams where required which is accessible through multiple channels."
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