Man died as a result of drugs and alcohol

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A MARCH man described how he desperately tried to revive his friend after a night out during which they took a cocktail of alcohol and drugs.

Darren Ladds performed CPR on Stuart Chard after he was found cold and unconscious on the settee in the lounge of a home he was house-sitting for a friend.

A post mortem showed Mr Chard died after inhaling his stomach contents as he lay asleep following the night out on January 20.

Mr Ladds, of Estover Road, told an inquest into 37-year-old Mr Chard’s death: “It was a shock to me, he was a good friend. He was stone cold, it was like putting your hand into a fridge. I have done a first aid course, and thought I could help. I thought I was bringing him back to life. But the paramedics told me he had been dead for six hours and there was nothing I could do.”

He told the hearing at Wisbech how he met up with Mr Chard at the Little London pub in Wisbech Road, where they had “drunk a lot of booze” - although he could not say how much. They had also been taking valium all day.

“We were pretty out of it, having a good time,” said Mr Ladds.

The pair left the pub at closing time to return to the friend’s home in Wisbech Road where they were joined a couple of hours later by Louise Downes.

She told the hearing that she decided both men had had enough and had thrown a packet of tablets in the bin.

All three started to fall asleep and Mr Ladds and Miss Downes decided to go upstairs to “crash out” leaving Mr Chard on the settee.

“Stuart said he was cold so I put a blanket over him, and went upstairs, that was the last I saw of him,” said Mr Ladds.

Miss Downes discovered Mr Chard’s body around middday the following morning.

Consultant pathologist Dr Martin Goddard said the post mortem showed Mr Chard had lignocaine, cocaine, valium and alcohol in his system.

Coroner William Morris recorded a verdict of accidental death and said: “It is very sad when a relatively young man has died. It is clear to me, particularly having heard from Dr Goddard, what has happened. He has died because of the aspiration of gastric contents that’s been brought about by the consumption of alcohol and the use of cocaine and diazepam.”