Depressed dad of two takes his own life
Published date: 21 July 2010 | Published by: Hayley Collins
A FATHER of two with a history of depression took a fatal overdose of prescription drugs, an inquest has heard.
Brian Elder, 55, was found dead at his warden controlled flat in Llys Erw, Ruthin, on November 10 last year.
A post mortem found that he had 2.39mgs per litre of blood of anti-depressant drug sertraline in his body – 10 times the therapeutic upper limit.
The inquest at Flint Magistrates Court heard how Mr Elder, an electrician, had a history of siezures, depression and alcohol abuse.
His former wife Adrienne Meager, who lives with the couple’s two children in Shotton, said in a statement that following the breakdown of their marriage he had started smoking pot.
“He was paranoid and thought that everyone was against him,” she said.
Despite being divorced Mrs Meager would regularly come to her husband’s aid and tried to wean him off alcohol.
The Friday before his death he had told her he was not well and told her not to come and visit as the “flat was a mess”.
The last person to see him alive was his neighbour Steven Green.
In a statement Mr Green said: “I saw him on November 6 and said I still had his DVDs. He told me it was okay to keep hold of them because he wouldn’t be needing them. It was an off the cuff comment and I didn’t think anything about it at the time.
“I saw him again on November 8 through the kitchen window. He was taking medication and throwing it into his mouth with one hand and taking a swig with the other.”
Two days later Mr Elder was discovered in the bedroom of the property by the on-site warden.
Ten empty packets of sertraline were found on the floor – which potentially contained up to 140 tablets.
North East Wales Coroner John Hughes said: “What’s happened is that he has taken so much of the drug it has depressed his central nervous system and he’s died. It is a very unusual drug to be involved in an overdose.”
Mr Hughes said he was satisfied it had been a deliberate act.
He said: “He had already rejected advances about visiting him. He had cut off the area of escape or discovery. The suggestion being that he did that so it was not possible for him to be rescued.
“The only conclusion I can provide is that he took his own life.”
A verdict of suicide was recorded.