Late drug addict's mother to discuss concerns over Wrexham son's death

Reporter:

Rory Sheehan

THE mother of a Wrexham man whose death was drug-related is to meet with the health board about his care.

Mathew Stephen Owen, 32, of Chester Road, Acton Smithy, died on March 10, an inquest heard yesterday.

North Wales East and Central deputy coroner Nicola Jones recorded a conclusion that Mr Owen’s death was related to drug use following a post-mortem examination carried out by Dr Andrew Dalton.

The hearing at Ruthin was told Mr Owen, who attended Marchwiel and Penley schools, was a builder and roofer on leaving school before becoming a personal trainer.

He had been in a three-year relationship with his ex-partner and helped raise her children.

Personal issues led to him turning to drugs and he moved back home in 2015 with his family becoming concerned for his welfare.

He was an intravenous user of heroin and cocaine and experienced anxiety and paranoia – but despite that he remained positive he would once again be able to lead a ‘normal’ life one day.

Mr Owen was on methadone and was frequently in and out of hospital. By February this year he was engaging with The Elms drug and alcohol service in Wrexham, with a view to eventually undergoing detox and rehab.

On the day he died, he had been found collapsed in the street with blood heamorrhaging from his groin.

Earlier that same day, he had been discharged from Wrexham Maelor Hospital after a bleed in his groin had been stopped.

When discharged, he visited his grandparents in Gwersyllt before taking a taxi back  to his flat in Wrexham.

But shortly afterwards, passers by and residents saw him by a lamp-post around the corner from his flat, with blood running down his trousers.

They called for the emergency services, assuming he had been the victim of a stabbing.

At the hospital staff could not raise his blood pressure and he suffered a cardiac arrest.

Mr Owen wrote a letter to his mother Kim Ozlu shortly prior to his death to say he wanted to change, turn his life around and have a fresh start.

He was also seeking to get back into employment.

Ms Ozlu, who was at the hearing, raised concerns about the support her son had received in the time leading up to his death.

She had written to his doctor with concerns about his anxiety and paranoia and felt he desperately needed rehab and needed mental health support.

Lisa Owen Burrow, Mr Owen’s case worker at The Elms, and Dr Faye Tarrant, a consultant psychiatrist for Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, explained that as he was a “long way” from being able to start
rehab.

Ms Ozlu said she was disappointed with the view that her son refused to engage with support groups when visiting The Elms, as he had no means or way of financing transport and it was a struggle for him to walk physically.

She also queried why her son had been discharged from the hospital that afternoon and had not had his blood tested.

The coroner, Ms Jones, said the notes suggested that his bleeding had stopped and he was deemed as “safe to go” but would pass on her concerns to the health board.

Hilary Owen, head of compliance at Betsi Cadwaladr, told Ms Ozlu she would speak with the health board’s team and arrange a meeting with her to discuss her concerns.

Email:

rory.sheehan@nwn.co.uk

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