Inquest opens into death of Derbyshire dad Chad Allford
An inquest has been opened into the death of a Derbyshire dad.
Chad Allford died on October 27 and his inquest began at Chesterfield Coroner’s Court on Tuesday.
Peter Nieto, area coroner, said the information he had received at this ‘very early stage’ was that police attended a property in Morewood Drive, Alfreton, on October 27 as part of an investigation ‘concerning illicit drugs’.
“Police found him (Mr Allford) with a packet in his mouth, possibly containing drugs,” Mr Nieto told the court.
He added that officers detained Mr Allford and the packet ‘split’.
Mr Allford subsequently ‘become unresponsive’ and CPR was started by police and paramedics, Mr Nieto said.
The 23-year-old, of Morewood Drive, Alfreton, was taken to King’s Mill Hopsital in Nottinghamshire where he was pronounced dead, the coroner added.
Mr Nieto said a post-mortem examination had been carried out but toxicological test results were pending and a ‘precise’ medical cause of death had not yet been established.
“I’m unable to see any evidence for any natural disease or any traumatic injuries that would account for his death,” he added.
“I’ve reason to suspect his death may not be a natural causes death – it may be related to the ingestion of a substance, but that still needs to be determined.
“I need to consider whether police contact in any way contributed to his death,” he told the inquest.
Following Mr Allford’s death, Derbyshire Constabulary referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
Adjourning the inquest and setting a review date of March 8 next year, Mr Nieto said he was awaiting ‘quite a lot of evidence’ in relation to the case.
He offered his condolences to Mr Allford’s loved ones.
At the end of October, an IOPC spokesperson said: “(Our) investigation is examining the nature of the interaction between police officers and Mr Allford including whether any force was used in his detention, and how his welfare was handled when he became unwell.
“Investigators are assessing initial accounts from the police officers involved and statements from other witnesses.
“We are also analysing police officers’ body worn video footage.
“As we are at an early stage of the investigation, we are unable to provide any further information at this time.”
IOPC regional director Derrick Campbell said: “Our thoughts are with Mr Allford’s friends and family following this tragic incident and I offer my condolences to them at this difficult time.
“We have spoken with family members to explain our role and how the investigation will progress – they will receive regular updates.
“I would like to assure people that we will carry out a thorough and independent investigation into what took place.”
After Mr Allford died, his brother Jerome told the Derbyshire Times he had ‘many concerns’.
He said: "Chad has gone – how could this have happened?
“We’re angry, so angry.
“We have a lot of unanswered questions, questions we want answering urgently.”
Paying tribute to his brother, Jerome said: “He was such a happy person who loved life.
“He enjoyed spending time with his friends and family – he was a dad.
“He loved to go out for food and he also loved to party.
“He was great.
“I still can’t believe what’s happened and the fact my brother is gone.”