A TEENAGER facing a double attempted murder charge after allegedly stabbing two women on the Runcorn Widnes bridge hung himself in a prison cell at HMP Forest Bank, seven weeks later, an inquest has heard.

Stephen Power, aged 18, of Henley Court, Runcorn, confessed to a psychiatric nurse at Altcourse prison that he had stabbed one of the women 30 times.

He was arrested after three women were attacked on December 1, 2009.

Stephen was walking across the bridge with a 19-year-old woman, at around 10.30pm, when it was alleged he stabbed her repeatedly with a knife.

A 44-year-old woman from Widnes, who was passing by, tried to help the victim and was stabbed herself.

Shortly afterwards, a third woman, aged 45, a relative of the teenage girl, suffered facial injuries after an assault in the Halton Road area of Runcorn.

Police completed a form alerting prison officials that Stephen was ‘feeling suicidal’ when they took him to Altcourse on December 5.

Psychiatric nurse Christopher Kinealy said he did not show any signs of mental illness when he assessed him the following day.

He told a jury at an inquest in Bolton on Tuesday: “He had good, clear, coherent speech. He listened and responded to positive advice.”

However, six hours later, Stephen was put on suicide watch after a letter he sent to his girlfriend, threatening to kill himself, was intercepted.

Bolton coroner Jennifer Leeming read the letter to the jury. “He said: ‘I’m going to kill myself.’ “When he was spoken to, he denied he had made that threat. He said he wanted to upset his girlfriend.”

She said, a week later, Stephen asked to see a psychiatrist.

Mrs Leeming said: “He chatted fullly about his childhood.

“Much of his school days were spent in custody. He had very few friends and appears to be a loner.

“He was not convicted of any crime, he was in custody on remand.”

Mr Kinealy, who conducted the second assessment, said: “He told me he was accused of two attempted murders and said he had stabbed one woman over 30 times.

“He has had an unfortunate upbringing and disturbed childhood but none of that can be treated by a psychiatrist.

“He didn’t display any signs or symptoms of mental illness.

“He denied he had any intention of suicide or self harm.

“His problem was he had an anti-social personality disorder which is a mental condition, not an ilness.”

Four days later, Stephen took an overdose and was taken to Fazackerley Hospital.

Senior psychiatric nurse Lisa McGee said prisoners were only given tablets in doses and had to take medication in front of staff. Meticulous records are kept.

It was not known how Stephen had stored so many.

When Stephen returned to Altcourse, he was moved to a care and separation unit.

He was later transferred to HMP Forest Bank prison in Manchester, where guards discovered he had hung himself shortly before midnight on Sunday, January 17, 2010.

The inquest continues and is expected to last for three weeks.