Kristy Cadman-Jones died on honeymoon of heroin overdose, Leicester inquest told
A husband was asked by a coroner if he was involved in the death of his newlywed wife from a drug overdose during their honeymoon.
Damian Cadman-Jones had been married to Kristy for six months when they took a four-week holiday to south east Asia, ending up in Cambodia. Mrs Cadman-Jones, 27, died on January 9, after taking a lethal dose of heroin, believing it was cocaine.
Toxicology reports found she had a "potentially toxic or lethal level" of morphine in her blood – the drug, which heroin is converted to inside the body.
At the inquest at Leicester Town Hall yesterday, deputy coroner Donald Coutts-Wood questioned Mr Cadman-Jones about his involvement in her death, asking him about a call made to life insurance company Zurich about his wife's policy on the day she died. The coroner asked: "Were you in any way involved with others in any intention to end your wife's life?" The 30-year-old solicitor answered: "No," before bursting into tears.
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The inquest heard he and his wife, who lived in Broughton Astley, held life insurance policies with Zurich. Mr Coutts-Wood asked: "Did you have any involvement in the referral to Zurich about a claim on that policy on January 9?''
Mr Cadman-Jones replied: "No. On the 9th?''
"The day your wife died,'' the coroner added.
He replied: "No, no way."
The inquest heard Mr Cadman-Jones failed to mention drug use in his first statement to the coroner's office in February. He later told police about the drugs. He said he was told by an independent legal advisor to leave any suspicions out of his first statement and to "keep to the facts."
Mr Cadman-Jones was also quizzed about an e-mail he sent to the British Embassy expressing a desire to have his wife's body embalmed – a process which could dilute drugs in her system, affecting potential toxicology tests. The coroner asked him: "Why were you so desperate to have your wife's body embalmed within 48 hours of her death?''
He answered: "Because Kristy was an only child and I was told that if embalming was to be done it had to be done within 48 hours, and I just wanted Carol (Kristy's mother) to be able to say goodbye to Kristy."
Mr Coutts-Wood asked: "Was the purpose of that e-mail, to get your wife's body embalmed, an attempt by you to cover up any toxicology that could be done?''
"No," Mr Cadman-Jones said.
The inquest at Leicester Town Hall – the venue where the pair married – heard Mr and Mrs Cadman-Jones met another couple in a bar the night before Kristy died. Mr Cadman-Jones, 30, said the couple offered them cocaine, but he refused the drug "for both of us".
Mr and Mrs Cadman-Jones went to bed. When he awoke in the early hours of January 9 he could not wake her, or find a pulse. He called reception, who called a doctor, and began CPR at about 3am. Mrs Cadman-Jones was pronounced dead at about 6am. Her husband said he had not seen her take drugs. He thought her death had been caused either by drugs administered by doctors before she was pronounced dead or a sleeping tablet she had taken.
Toxicologist Paul Smith said Mrs Cadman-Jones' blood contained lethal levels of morphine and lower levels of codeine.
Mr Coutts-Wood said she died from morphine and codeine toxicity.
He recorded an open verdict and said Mr Cadman-Jones' evidence was "not credible".
Mr Coutts-Wood said: "There's only one witness who was present who is able to give evidence in respect as to what happened – that is the deceased's husband.
"I do not find his evidence is credible. There are too many contradictions in the evidence that he has presented to this office and evidence given in this court, I find not credible."