"A good friend": Northampton man died in fall down stairs in 'drugs related accident', coroner rules
A coroner has ruled that a man died in a drug-related accident at his home in Northampton.
Mark Franklin, 40, was found at the bottom of some stairs by his friend and flatmate at his home in South Holme Court on June 17, 2016, at around 9.30pm.
Although CPR was given, he was pronounced dead at Northampton General Hospital at 10.53pm.
A post-mortem found Mr Franklin had taken heroin, methadone and had drunk alcohol in the hours before the accident.
Charlotte Windsor, Mr Franklin's flatmate, said she was on the phone when she heard a bump, but put it down to Mr Franklin making noise. When she saw him lying at the bottom of the stairs, she thought he had fallen asleep in an odd position like he often did around the house. But minutes later she realised something was wrong and called 999.
She said: "I have lost a good friend who I cared about. I can't believe how this came to happen and I miss him every day."
Mr Franklin had previously been homeless for some time, but after contacting the Northampton Hope Centre for help, his friends and family said he was making progress towards quitting drugs and alcohol.
Paul Franklin, Mark's father, said in a statement read by the coroner: "He was working as a painter and decorator in Northampton which he seemed to be really enjoying. It seemed for the first time in many years he was trying to be part of the family again. I can't believe we lost him after it seemed he was doing so well."