A female officer cadet has been found dead at the renowned Sandhurst military academy in an apparent suicide, the MoD confirmed today.
The 21-year-old was found in her room at the Royal Military Academy in Surrey on Wednesday.
The young cadet was involved in an investigation following a party at the weekend, after which she ‘did not return to her barracks.’
The 21-year-old was found in her room at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, in Surrey (pictured)
The unnamed cadet had joined Sandhurst in May and was in her third term at the elite academy.
She is understood to have spent the night in another barracks after a ‘drunken’ party at the weekend.
There is no allegation of wrongdoing other than not returning to her barracks at night, the MoD confirmed.
Thames Valley Police has now launched an investigation into the death.
The woman reportedly had to take part in a ‘walk of shame’ after the party at the weekend.
It is unclear whether the woman found dead was an overseas student or from the UK.
A post-mortem examination is expected to be carried out by an Army pathologist who will prepare a report for the coroner.
An inquest into her death will be opened and adjourned next week.
The unnamed cadet (not pictured) had joined Sandhurst in May and was in her third term at the elite academy. Pictured, Officer cadets on parade at The Sovereign’s Parade in 2009
An MOD Spokesman said: ‘We can confirm that an incident has occurred at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst resulting the death of an Officer Cadet, our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time.’
A Thames Valley Police spokesman said: ‘At around 3pm on Wednesday officers were called to the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst.
‘On attending the scene they found that a woman in her twenties had sadly died. Her next of kin have been informed. The death is being treated as unexplained but non-suspicious. A file is being prepared for the coroner.’
In 1998, the Ministry of Defence faced criticism over the death of a young cadet who had taken part in a gruelling training exercise.
Sandhurst cadet Graham Holmes, 23, collapsed in July 1998 after a training exercise which involved a six mile run and an assault course.
The Edinburgh university graduate was carrying a 40lb kit and his core body temperature reached 43C.
He died after two weeks in hospital.
Martin Pybus, 26, from Bishopbriggs, Glasgow, was found hanged the day before his passing-out parade in December 2003. In his diary he had written about ‘flaws’ in his relationship with fellow army cadet, Tiffany Frankland. Berkshire coroner Peter Bedford recorded a verdict of suicide.
Sandhurst: The elite academy which has been training officers since 1812
Prince William (middle row, second left) salutes as his younger brother Prince Harry takes part in The Sovereign’s Parade at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst in 2006
Princes William and Harry both attended the prestigious academy which has trained officers since 1812.
Harry, who graduated in 2006, went on two tours of duty to Afghanistan and qualified as an Apache aircraft commander during his decade-long military career.
Sandhurst has also hosted many famous graduates including the Sultan of Brunei, Sir Winston Churchill, fascist Sir Oswald Mosley, James Bond author Ian Fleming, singer James Blunt and Oscar-winning actor David Niven.
There is a long tradition of foreign royals training at the elite site, which sees officer cadets endure a taxing 44-week course where they must meet strict standards throughout.
One of the most prominent was King Hussein of Jordan, who attended Sandhurst as a teenager before going on to rule his country for more than four decades.
Prince Harry and Prince William chat after The Sovereign’s Parade at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst in Surrey to mark the completion of their training in 2006
King Hussein of Jordan visits Sandhurst in 1959. From left: Lt Gen J H Nigel Poett, King Hussein, Commandant General R U Urquhart