A HOMELESS man was found dead on his friend’s sofa the day after being released from prison.

Damon Denton, aged 33, celebrated his release from Forest Bank prison on September 7 of last year by drinking beer and taking cocaine at a friend’s flat in Chorley Old Road.

But, after falling asleep on a sofa, he was found in an unresponsive state the next day.

An inquest into his death at Bolton Coroners Court heard that he died of cocaine poisoning.

After being released from prison at the end of a nine-week sentence, Mr Denton had met up with his friend Christopher Downey and spent several hours in Bolton town centre before heading to Mr Downey’s flat.

After an evening of drinking and taking cocaine, during which Mr Denton had at one point complained about experiencing heartburn, the pair fell asleep.

When Mr Downey awoke the following morning, he tried to wake his friend, who was still asleep on the sofa. But, he told him he was tired and asked him to leave him alone.

Mr Downey then went out and when he returned home later in the day, he found Mr Denton lying in the same position.

After asking if he was OK, and receiving no response, he pulled the cover off his face, only to discover Mr Denton’s face had turned blue and he was not breathing.

He tried to rouse him by shaking him, but received no response.

Pathologist Patrick Waugh told the hearing that Mr Denton’s cause of death had been cocaine toxicity.

The court heard that Mr Denton had a history of drug abuse, going back to when he was 16, and that he had missed an appointment with the drug and alcohol service in Bolton on the day of his release.

Mr Denton’s mother Audrey told the court that after her son started taking drugs, his behaviour towards her had become erratic.

On occasions, he had shouted at his mother after she refused to give him money.

A restraining order was put in place, which Mr Denton had repeatedly breached, resulting in a number of spells in prison, the last of which began last summer.

Paying tribute to her son, Mrs Denton said: “Although Damon had a lot problems growing up, when he was in a good place he was a kind, considerate, polite young man and he was well liked by a lot of people.

“But, he always seemed to be attracted to the people that took him down the wrong path and we could not do anything about it.

“He used to just tell us ‘I’m an adult, I can do what I want’”.

Coroner Sarah Watson recorded a conclusion of a drug-related death, adding: “Damon had a history of illicit drug abuse and had just been released from prison and went to the address.

“On September 8, he was found in an unresponsive condition. His cause of death was given as cocaine toxicity.”