Tragic teen identified by ‘Lost Soul’ tattoo

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A teenager killed by a train at Belper Railway Station at the weekend had to be identified by tattoos on his fingers, an inquest has heard.

Mitchell James Rodgers, 16, of Bentfield Road, Nether Heage, died following the incident at around 10pm on Saturday, an inquest heard today (April 2).

The fanatical skateboarder died as a result of head injuries and was initially identified by a training shoe found lying on the track, Derby Coroners’ Court was told.

Opening the inquest into the teenager’s death, Coroner Robert Hunter said that Mitchell had the term ‘Lost Soul’ tattooed across the fingers of his hands.

He said Mitchell’s mother, Nicola Village, had provided police with a photograph of Mitchell which showed the tattoos, which were used to formally identify his body after it was taken to Derby Royal Hospital.

In a statement read out by the coroner, Det Con Sarah Jane Fraser said that the word ‘Soul’ could be identified on the teenager’s left hand.

But his right hand had been too badly damaged for investigators to read the symbols, which Mitchell had tattooed himself, the inquest heard.

The coroner is also still awaiting toxicology reports from HM Coroner Francis Hollingbury, who carried out the post mortem examination, and reports from Derbyshire Constabulary and British Transport Police.

Following the death, Derbyshire police confirmed they had been following Mitchell moments before he was killed.

Detective Chief Inspector Julian Wilson, of Derbyshire Police, said officers had spoken to the youth shortly before the incident at around 10pm on Saturday night, and had followed him ‘from a distance away’.

It is understood officers had been called to a disturbance.

The force has now referred the case to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

A spokesman for the IPCC stated this was a matter of course in incidents of ‘death or serious injury following police contact’.

He confirmed that the commission has now launched an independent investigation into the matter.

Det Ch Insp Wilson said the police are currently investigating the incident as a ‘tragic accident’ rather than a deliberate act.

The inquest was adjourned until June.

Pictured: Tributes to Mitchell sprayed at Belper Skate Park. Mitchell Rodgers, skateboarding.