Drug death mum 'was not punched in face by police'
A DRUG addict died in her living room after taking a cocktail of legal and illegal substances, a court heard.
An inquest in Bolton was told how 37-year-old Zoe O’Hanlon funded her addiction through shoplifting and, shortly before she died on September 15 last year, complained to a friend that she had been punched in the mouth by police while being arrested.
Following the mum-of-two’s death at her ground floor flat in Crescent Drive, Little Hulton, Greater Manchester Police’s professional standards branch conducted an investigation and, together with evidence from a post mortem examination, it was concluded that no assault had taken place.
Coroner Jennifer Leeming was told how Ms O’Hanlon’s neighbour, Diana Daniels, spotted her hanging out washing on the morning of September 14.
But when she did not take it back inside in the evening, Ms Daniels and her partner, Michael Pearson, went to her flat and found her face down in front of the fire on the living room floor.
She murmured when shaken and so the couple covered her with a duvet and left her.
The next morning they went back to the flat and found her dead.
The inquest heard that Ms O’Hanlon had been arrested twice on September 10 for shoplifting at the Ellesmere and Trafford Centres and in the evening had been taken to Salford Royal Infirmary complaining of chest pain, but no injury was found.
Pathologist, Dr Phillip Lumb, said he could find no evidence of any assault when carrying out the post mortem examination, but toxicology reports showed that she had heroin, methadone and a number of tranquillisers and anti-depressant drugs in her body which, when combined, were at fatal levels.
Recording an accidental death conclusion Mrs Leeming said: “It is not unknown that people do not fully appreciate that different drugs can have a common effect.”