Drugs warning after death

A CORONER has warned of the perils of drug use after a happy young father was found dead after taking his friend's methadone.Popular builder Jonathan Ramsey, 22, died in his friend's Grundisburgh flat after taking a dose of methadone so large that it would have been lethal to even a hardened drug user.

A CORONER has warned of the perils of drug use after a happy young father was found dead after taking his friend's methadone.

Popular builder Jonathan Ramsey, 22, died in his friend's Grundisburgh flat after taking a dose of methadone so large that it would have been lethal to even a hardened drug user.

An inquest held at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday heard the keen fisherman from Edward Fitzgerald Court in Woodbridge had travelled to the flat on his bike on June 29 to visit his friend and they had spent the evening chatting and watching television.

When it became dark Mr Ramsey's friend suggested he stay the night because he didn't have a light for the bike.

During the night the friend heard Mr Ramsey get up a number of times but when he woke the next morning he could not get a response from him. The friend called paramedics but Mr Ramsey died later in Ipswich Hospital's casualty department.

A bottle of methadone prescribed to the friend was found empty in the flat and toxicology tests showed Mr Ramsey's blood contained a lethal amount of the drug.

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Greater Suffolk coroner Dr Peter Dean said: “These very sad circumstances again emphasise the tremendous dangers of drug use and the dangers even if one is not a regular user but is experimenting with drug use.”

Police have battled to piece together the circumstances which led Mr Ramsey, who did not have a drug habit but was known to have experimented with drugs in the past, to take his friend's methadone.

On June 29, the day before he was found dead, Mr Ramsey had spent time with Emma Paternoster, his girlfriend of two years with whom he had a ten-month-old baby, and had not shown any signs of wanting to end his life.

In a statement after his death, she said: “I do not believe that he would have taken an overdose. Everything we had was going well. We had a son together, everything was going well.”

The court heard a statement from Mr Ramsey's father Peter Ramsey who said his son was a “willing worker” who was loved by many.

He said: “I loved my son and I know he was very much loved by his family and his many friends. He clearly will be very much missed.”

The police investigation found it was known that Mr Ramsey had used drugs in the past but only on a casual basis.

Dr Dean told the inquest that said there was no evidence that Mr Ramsey had intended to take his own life and he described him as a man “with everything to live for”.

He said: “We really don't know how that level of methadone came to be consumed. We're not aware in any detail of what took place.”

Dr Dean recorded an open verdict into Mr Ramsey's death.

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