By Max Musson:
It would appear that Carl had an eating disorder for more than a decade as by his own admission, his relationship with his last girlfriend ended approximately ten years ago as a result of his overweight. Carl reputedly weighed approximately 20 stones at that time, but his overeating worsened significantly following the death of his mother three years ago, leading to him becoming unable to work then housebound, and finally unable to move from his bed as his weight escalated.
According to various newspaper articles, Carl ate a diet with a calorific value of 10,000 calories per day – a daily diet consisting of: four sausages, five fried eggs, fried bread, a pan of mushrooms fried in butter, and a bowl of cereal with full fat milk for his breakfast; followed by a bowl of pasta, chips, bacon, pork pies, crisps, pasties, sandwiches, and chocolate for his lunch; followed by £25 worth of takeaway food for his dinner, interspersed with snacks consisting of £10 worth of chocolate bars per day. He was apparently able to buy all of this food with the money provided for him in state benefits.
This tragic case clearly raises some serious issues, as anyone with any common sense would question how it was that a man who was unable to stand, let alone walk, could obtain all of this food, enough to eat himself to death?
Carl was apparently undergoing medical treatment for his eating disorder, he also had two carers who used to visit him twice a day to wash him and prepare his food, and he had given a key to his home to at least one of the proprietors of a local fast food outlet, so that food could be delivered to his bedside.
It would appear therefore that Carl’s carers and the proprietors of the local takeaway food establishments were responsible for continually placing food in front of him — food that he was unable to stop himself from eating. Not just a little too much food, mind you, but four or five times the amount of food that any normal person would eat! And we are expected to believe that they didn’t realise what they were doing was wrong?
It was not simply a matter that Carl was slightly overweight and could therefore still be regarded as capable to looking after his own affairs, it was not even a matter of him being a grossly obese person with a serious eating disorder but who could still be relied upon to draw the line before actually gorging himself to death. No, Carl was ‘Britain’s fattest man’, a man so grotesquely obese that he had become a hideous mountain of fat and flab, unable to care for himself and reduced to wallowing helplessly in his bed. Clearly he had lost mental capacity and matters should have been taken out of his hands. Carl Thompson had himself appealed for psychiatric help and had asked to be taken into hospital!
It appears however that Carl’s requests were rejected on the grounds there were insufficient hospital facilities available. Apparently a man with an obviously morbid psychiatric illness, who routinely abused his body to such an extent that imminent death was inevitable without urgent medical and psychiatric intervention, was not a high enough priority for today’s National Health Service!
He had clearly lost the capacity to make rational decisions regarding his food intake and others responsible for his care should have taken the appropriate action. It cannot possibly be argued that those responsible didn’t notice how dire his situation had become. No-one can claim they didn’t realise this man, who weighed as much as the combined weight of five normal men, had become so morbidly obese that he was clearly incapable of making rational decisions.
He should have been sectioned under the Mental Health Act and admitted to hospital as a matter of urgency, just as anyone found trying to overdose on any other kind of lethal substance would have been. The police have stated that they do not suspect foul-play regarding his death, but one must ask the question why no-one is considering levying charges of criminal negligence against those responsible for his care?
If it is not tantamount to criminal negligence to fail to place in protective custody someone in Carl Thompson’s condition, we must ask ourselves, why it isn’t? And if it is not criminal negligence to keep placing four or five times the normal amount of food in front of someone who is a compulsive eater, we must again ask why?
By Max Musson © 2015
# # # #