‘One-off mistake’ killed Market Deeping man on holiday

Peterborough Town Hall
Peterborough Town Hall
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An air-conditioning worker from Market Deeping died from a fatal dose of heroin while on holiday with his girlfriend.

Matthew Whitbourn, 39, was travelling in Thailand when he died suddenly on October 2, 2012.

An inquest into his death at Peterborough Town Hall on Tuesday heard the British Embassy in Thailand had “scarce” information, but it was established through a toxicology report that heroin was found in Mr Whitbourn’s system.

The pathologist’s report concluded that “death was due to a heroin overdose” and that “there was no natural, traumatic changes of the body.”

The report excluded any possible natural causes of death.

Mr Whitbourn was travelling with his girlfriend when he suffered a cardiac arrest whilst staying in Koh Pha-ngan in the province of Surat Thani.

He had been in contact with his mother Marilyn who said she had her concerns about his trip.

According to his mother, Mr Whitbourn was having a good time on his travels.

She only realised that something was wrong when his girlfriend sent her a text then rang her to let her know that her son had suffered sudden breathing difficulties before suffering his cardiac arrest.

Coroner David Heming recorded a verict of a drug-related death.

Summing up the findings of the inquest, Mr Heming said: “Police are quite satisfied that it was a non-suspicious death.

“The toxic nature of these drugs means that the effect is very quick.”

Speaking after the inquest, Mrs Whitbourn said taking heroin was completely unlike her son and was out of character.

“He was not a drug user, it must have been a one-off mistake,” she said.

“He had a good job and a big heart, but he just made a big mistake.”