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Blackburn grandmother overdosed on partner’s methadone after leaving farewell note to granddaughter

A woman took her own life after overdosing on her partner’s methadone moments after leaving a note telling her grandchild she would no longer be around.

Kerry-Anne Mallet was found unresponsive on the floor of her bedroom by her partner Liam Williams on February 28 this year.

An inquest at Preston Coroner’s Court heard how the 45-year-old, who lived on Brothers Street in Blackburn, had a history of drug and alcohol misuse and also suffered with some mental health issues.

Coroner Richard Taylor said: “She had complained of feeling cold and unwell the previous evening, and when her partner went to bed around 11pm she stayed up.

“When he awoke, he realised she wasn’t there and as he got out of bed he found her on the floor unresponsive, blocking the doorway.”

The inquest heard toxicology was taken from Kerry-Anne, which revealed she had methadone in her system consistent with having used it in the hours before her death.

There was also evidence of several other medications in her blood stream, some used to treat pain and depression, as well as the presence of cocaine.

Mr Taylor said: “A medical cause of death as offered as multi-drug toxicity.”

A statement from Mr Williams said Kerry-Anne had struggled for many years with alcohol and drugs but had been clean of heroin for a decade.

She was also taking anti-depressants and had found it difficult not being able to see her granddaughter during the Covid pandemic and lockdown.

His statement said: “I was asked about methadone. I am a methadone user and have been prescribed it on and off for 30 years.

“When I stay at Kerry’s I usually keep my methadone in the living room in a cabinet.

“On the Saturday I had three bottles of 50ml. I never had any concerns about Kerry taking it or using it and to my knowledge she never did. However, on February 27 I think she might have taken an overdose.

“I went to pick up the bottles a few days after her death and saw they were filled to the top of the cap rather than the shoulder of the bottle and when I went to taste them, they were water.”

Mr Taylor told the inquest that as far as Mr Williams was concerned, Kerry had never been prescribed methadone.

He said a notebook was seized from the property which contained entries to members of her family, which were written as if she would not be around anymore.

Mr Taylor added: “She made reference of ‘going to sleep’, and there was a note to her granddaughter dated 11.27pm on February 27 which spoke of not being around much longer.

“We have a situation where a significant amount of medication has been taken that clearly does not appear to have been an accident, given that the bottles of methadone were refilled, and evidence of notes written the night before indicating she would no longer be around – while not displaying an intent to end her own life they do express an understanding that she was not going to be alive for very much longer and I will return a conclusion of suicide.”

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