Mystery as British mother is given ‘suicide note’ written by daughter, 26, who Turkish police say shot herself after arguing with her boyfriend – but she insists her daughter did not take her own life
- Turkish courts ruled Ayse Rhiannon Vural shot herself in her apartment in 2020
- But mother Tracie Brookes says questions that remain unanswered about the investigation after she collected her daughter’s belongings
Mystery continues to surround the death of a young British woman in Turkey after her mother was handed an alleged suicide note.
Local judges closed the case when they ruled that Ayse Rhiannon Vural had shot herself in her apartment in Istanbul on September 11, 2020.
The 26-year-old was found with a gunshot wound to her head a day after a violent row with her boyfriend, who is also alleged to have made death threats against her.
Now, her heartbroken mother Tracie Brookes says there are serious questions that remain unanswered about the police investigation, and that the return of a supposed suicide note has left her with more questions than answers.
Tracie came to Turkey to obtain her daughter’s belongings and a copy of the investigation file. Upon her arrival in Turkey, the mother learned that her daughter had left a suicide note, and it was handed over with other possessions.
To add to the mystery, while reviewing the list of her daughter’s belongings that were found after she died, Tracie discovered that some things included were missing.
British mother Tracie Brookes is fighting for justice after her 26-year-old daughter who was found with a gunshot wound to her head a day after a violent row with her boyfriend in Turkey. She was recently handed her daughter’s belongings (pictured) but says some are missing
Brookes (left) says there are serious questions that remain unanswered about the investigation into the death of her daughter – Ayse Rhiannon Vural (right) – and that the return of a alleged suicide note left her with more questions than answers
These were two large suitcases and her daughter’s beloved stuffed rabbit – a plush toy of Disney’s Thumper from the film ‘Bambi’, which was always with her since childhood and was found on her chest when she was discovered dead.
In the small package she received, there were only a few items that belonged to her daughter, including a laptop, three cellphones, keys, a cloth bag, a T-shirt, perfume, an ultrasound image, a piece of paper with ‘Ararat’ and an address written on it, and several sheets of drawing paper.
Additionally, a single US dollar bill found on Ayse’s nightstand was handed over.
But perhaps most importantly, Tracie finally received the alleged suicide letter.
The note read: ‘I found my identity. I never told anyone it was taken from me, but maybe I lost it myself. Everything I have can be given to my sister. My mother can decide what to do on her own.’
And another piece of paper stated: ‘Ararat, I’m so glad. He is my soulmate, my life. Ararat is gone, my life is gone. Goodbye.’
With tears in her eyes and carrying her daughter’s rings around her neck, Tracie stood outside the courthouse and said: ‘I have even more questions than before.
‘The day before her death, she had reported her ex-boyfriend, Ararat Ozer.
‘He had beaten Ayse and threatened to kill her if he saw her again.
‘Where is all her money, and who gave her that USD 1 bill?
‘The only thing I want to retrieve is the rabbit. She took it with her everywhere she went. It was on her chest when she died, and now where is it?
‘Ayse loved life, and she loved Istanbul. These are the only things left of her.’
Brookes says there were items missing that were included on the list of her daughter’s belongings found after her death. These were two large suitcases and her daughter’s beloved stuffed rabbit – a plush toy of Disney’s Thumper (pictured) from the film ‘Bambi’, which was always with her since childhood and was found on her chest when she was discovered dead
The young girl, who had requested a restraining order, reportedly told police they had broken up eight months prior but would see each other occasionally.
She reportedly said the two began arguing after he saw her seeing guests out the door and became jealous, then began swearing at her.
He reportedly threatened her saying: ‘If you don’t leave here tonight, I will kill you. If you’re with another man, I will kill you,’ and allegedly assaulted her.
The next day, she was dead.
Ararat is currently being investigated over suspicions of being an alleged member in a criminal gang.
However, Tracie said prosecutors had treated him only as an informant after he claimed he was out of town on the day of the murder.
He further claimed Ayse had threatened him with suicide if he left her.
The grieving mother visited her daughter’s grave before returning to her country.
She added: ‘I know some items are missing. What’s left of my daughter’s life is in Istanbul. I will return to England. I hope to reopen the case.
‘I don’t believe Ayse took her own life.’
Tracie has previously questioned why there was a gun involved.
‘We’re from England. We don’t know guns. We don’t have guns in England,’ she said in May. ‘Ayse knows nothing about guns. But somebody gave her a gun. Now whether they told her to shoot herself or whether they shot her…
‘The verdict from the court said that it was suicide, that there was gunpowder residue on her hand, so the prosecutor’s office said that Ayse killed herself.
Ayse Rhiannon Vural’s body was discovered in her Istanbul apartment in September 2020, having sustained a single gunshot wound to the head
‘But I wonder, was somebody there? Was somebody there to tell her to do it? I don’t understand.’
The murky case was also apparently been scrutinised by Interpol because the gun that killed Ayse had allegedly been used in other cases under investigation with Turkish authorities.
Tracie added: ‘I think that Interpol got involved because this gun, it was a hot gun.’
She explained that it ‘had been used in crimes before, not with Ayse, but somebody had used that gun and given it to her’.
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