Suffolk

Drunken fall down stairs 'led to man's death' in Bury St Edmunds

The Coroner's Court and offices Image copyright Google
Image caption Kevin Turnbull, 52, died at a property in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, at about 12:15 BST on 14 September 2016

A man died from head injuries after drinking up to 10 lagers and a bottle of vodka before falling down the stairs, an inquest heard.

Kevin Turnbull, 52, died at a property in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, at about 12:15 BST on 14 September 2016.

The hearing in Ipswich heard he had been drinking all day the previous day and had fallen down the stairs at between 22:00 and 23:00 that night.

There was no evidence he had been pushed or assaulted.

Suffolk Coroner Peter Dean concluded Mr Turnbull died from injuries received from falling down the stairs.

Police had initially treated the death as a murder and arrested two people, who were later released without any action.

The inquest heard Mr Turnbull, who lived in Great Whelnetham, had been drinking with friends Richard and Tracey Byrne after meeting them at a pub at 11:30 on 13 September.

They continued drinking back at the Byrnes' house on Samuel Street Walk.

According to Mrs Byrne's police statement, Mr Turnbull had drunk up to 10 lagers and a bottle of vodka.

'Hazards of excessive alcohol'

It was at the Byrnes' house, he fell down the stairs.

The couple said he said he was unconscious for about 10 minutes and when he regained consciousness he told them not to call an ambulance.

They said he carried on drinking and was "laughing and joking".

Mr Turnbull was found snoring on the floor in the doorway in the morning but the couple left him "to sleep it off".

When they returned, they realised "something was wrong" and an ambulance was called.

Pathologist Dr Nat Cary told the court he had 180mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood, the legal limit for driving is 80mg.

He said there was bleeding on the brain, and for any chance of survival Mr Turnbull should have been given medical attention after he regained consciousness from the fall.

Dr Dean said it emphasised the "hazards of excessive alcohol".

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