Legal high did not kill man who died minutes after smoking Psyclone
A MAN collapsed and died seconds after smoking a “legal high” drug he bought from Bolton Market, an inquest heard.
But the hearing was told the drug did not kill him - he died from a heart problem brought on by a cocktail of cocaine and alcohol.
Bolton Coroners Court heard yesterday how friends thought Michael Marshall, aged 38, was joking when he fell between a bed and a wardrobe seconds after smoking a herbal incense called Psyclone — also known as Clockwork Orange — at a friend’s flat on Sunday, September 29.
They tried to resuscitate him when they saw his face had turned blue.
Steven Cropper, who was at the flat with Mr Marshall in Columbia Street, Heaton, said: “There wasn’t much Psyclone left. He got hold of the bong and smoked it.
“He took one long drag - there wasn’t even a joint’s worth in it. He had a big smile on his face then keeled over. It happened within one minute. We thought he was joking.”
The incident happened days after Mr Marshall was released from prison on September 24.
He had been serving a jail term for breaching a restraining order that forbade him from contacting his partner.
Paramedics attempted to revive Mr Marshall, of Park Road, Heaton, but he was pronounced dead at Royal Bolton Hospital.
Friends told police he had smoked Psyclone and taken another legal high called Salvia.
A post mortem examination carried out by Dr Emil Salmo revealed Mr Marshall had alcohol equivalent to more than twice the legal drink driving limit and cocaine in his body.
No traces of Psyclone or Salvia could be found.
Police carried out an investigation but did not find any suspicious circumstances.
Following Mr Marshall’s death, police warned people not to smoke herbal incense.
Mr Marshall was said by his auntie, Helen Hornby, to have been a “loving child, a much loved nephew and friend to many”. But he was said to drink heavily.
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Assistant coroner Geoffrey Saul said: “The toxicity of cocaine with alcohol in Mr Marshall’s body would not normally be expected to cause death but could have caused a heart related death.
"The cause of death was a heart problem brought on by a combination of cocaine and alcohol. No evidence was found of Psyclone or Salvia.
"It may have had minimal effect on the cause of death but it cannot be proved.”
He recorded a verdict of death caused by alcohol and drugs.