Caroline Flack was one of the UK’s most loved TV presenters until her tragic death a year ago, but how did Caroline Flack die?
And why was the star facing a criminal trial at the time of her death?
The former Love Island host was just 40 when she died – here’s a timeline to the tragic end of her life.
December 12 2019: Caroline arrested for assaulting boyfriend
Caroline famously dated Prince Harry, Harry Styles, Sam Smith’s manager Jack Street, The Apprentice star Andrew Brady and rugby player Danny Cipriani.
All of her relationships made headlines news.
But it was her ill-fated love affair with tennis player Lewis Burton that would become her downfall.
Lewis reportedly called 999 on December 12 2019 saying Caroline was attacking him.
On arrival at Caroline’s home, police found Lewis bleeding from a wound to his head.
Caroline hit him with a lamp or desk fan, he claimed.
Caroline allegedly confessed “I did it” to police, and then warned she would kill herself.
Police arrested her and took her into custody for questioning.
December 13 2019: Caroline charged
Police subsequently charged Caroline with assault by beating.
The 40-year-old faced a criminal trial over the allegation she had attacked her boyfriend Lewis while he was sleeping.
Reports say she feared he had been cheating on her.
In her police interview, the TV host reportedly said she had a phone in her hand when she made contact with Lewis’ head.
She insisted any injury was accidental.
Police banned the couple from contacting each other, but they remained together.
December 17 2019: Caroline loses Love Island job
Caroline stepped down from ITV2’s Love Island and its spin-off show Love Island: Aftersun.
She announced she would not host the sixth series due to the assault allegations against her.
She didn’t want to “detract attention from the upcoming series”.
Caroline had been riding high in the years leading up to her death, including winning Strictly Come Dancing in 2014.
She hosted The Xtra Factor from 2011 to 2015, alongside Olly Murs.
She’d won over many other hopefuls to become the host of Love Island, ITV2’s hugely successful dating show.
From 2015 to 2019, Caroline’s sympathetic hosting style had won her legions of fans.
Her popularity no doubt helped her bag an acting role in Steve Coogan’s 2019 film Greed.
Tragically, it would all come tumbling down when her personal life started affecting her career.
Her fans had no clue that the presenter had secretly been suffering from mental health issues.
December 23 2019: Caroline appears in court
Caroline pleaded not guilty to the charges at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court on December 23 2019.
Her solicitor told the court that Lewis did not support the prosecution and that “he is not the victim, as he would say, he was a witness”.
Police released Caroline on bail with the condition that she did not contact Lewis.
She was due to stand trial on March 4 2020.
Sadly, she did not survive to make the date.
Reports at the time said that the TV star had genuine concerns she would go to prison.
Caroline expressed fears the police bodycam footage would be shown during her impending assault trial.
According to The Sun, close friends suggested the Love Island star was suicidal over fears of the bodycam footage, which reportedly features her severely distressed and in a state of undress, being shown in court.
February 13 2020: Caroline’s last Instagram message
Caroline returned to social media ahead of Valentine’s Day, sharing cute photos with her dog.
She had also shared a message to fans at Christmas, after months of social media silence.
She said: “Been advised not to go on social media but I wanted to say happy Christmas to everyone who has been so incredibly kind to me this year.
“This kind of scrutiny and speculation is a lot to take on for one person to take on their own.
“I’m a human being at the end of the day and I’m not going to be silenced when I have a story to tell and a life to keep going with.
“I’m taking some time out to get feeling better and learn some lessons from situations I’ve got myself into.
“I have nothing but love to give and best wishes for everyone.”
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February 15 2020: Caroline Flack dies
Caroline was found dead at her home in North East London, on February 15 2020.
She was just 40 years old.
News broke on Saturday evening of Caroline’s tragic death; it’s understood she took her own life after a friend who was staying with her went out to the shops.
Unable to get back into Caroline’s flat, the friend raised the alarm.
The lawyer acting for her family stated that her death was a suicide.
The day before her death, Caroline had allegedly been informed that the Crown Prosecution Service was pursuing the trial, which Lewis did not support.
Her family issued a statement saying: “We can confirm that our Caroline passed away today on February 15.
“We would ask that the press respect the privacy of the family at this difficult time.”
Caroline left behind a twin sister, Jody, another sister, Elizabeth, and brother Paul.
August 02 2020: How did Caroline Flack die?
The coroner found that Caroline’s death was a suicide on August 2 2020 after a two-day hearing.
She had taken her own life after reportedly learning she would be prosecuted for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend.
We also learnt that she had suffered a long struggle with “fluctuating mental health” that was exacerbated by the stress of fame.
The TV presenter wrote “please let this court case be dropped” on a note discovered near her body at home the inquest revealed.
Caroline Flack reportedly took a “small drug overdose” months before her death, the inquest heard.
Speaking at the inquest, Harley Street psychiatrist Dr Brian Wells shared a statement.
Mr Wells claimed on December 22 of 2020, Caroline’s management team informed him she had taken a “small drug overdose” in a London hotel.
Another note, written by Caroline at the end of January, added that she’d been having “some sort of emotional breakdown for a very long time”.
She insisted she was not a domestic abuser.
Friends and family gathered at a private funeral when Caroline was laid to rest on March 10 2020.
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