Young men 'didn't look like they'd killed someone', Chesterfield man's inquest hears

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The knife which police believe was used to stab a Chesterfield man was found in a flat close to where he died, an inquest heard.

Darren Broadbent, 35, was found dead at a flat in Thorntree Court, Grangewood, on August 1, 2016, with a stab wound to his chest.

An inquest into Mr Broadbent’s death is taking place at Chesterfield coroners’ court this week.

On Monday, the inquest heard how Mr Broadbent, of Grindlow Avenue, Boythorpe, died after attempting to rob two young men from Sheffield - Jaiden Browne-Evans, who was 18 at the time, and a teenager who cannot be identified because of his age and will be referred to as Boy A.

The court was told the intended robbery was the brainchild of Mr Broadbent’s friend, Susan Shaw. She is currently serving a six-year prison sentence for conspiracy to commit robbery.

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Giving evidence on Tuesday, Thomas Ludlam - who lived in a flat at Birchwood Court, Grangewood, at the time of Mr Broadbent’s death - said he used to buy heroin and crack cocaine from Mr Browne-Evans and Boy A.

He added that he saw the pair on the morning Mr Broadbent died.

Mr Ludlam told the inquest: “I met the lads as they were walking up the road.

“They asked if they could get a taxi from mine.

“They didn’t look like they’d just killed someone - they weren’t covered in blood or anything.

“They were carrying drugs but I didn’t see any weaponry.”

Coroner Kathryn Hayes said the knife which police believe was used to stab Mr Broadbent was found in Mr Ludlam’s property.

She asked him if he knew how it came to be there.

He replied: “I presume they (Mr Browne-Evans and Boy A) brought it.”

Giving evidence, Mr Browne-Evans admitted he was selling drugs from the Thorntree Court flat on the night before Mr Broadbent’s death.

But he said he did not know how the knife ended up at Mr Ludlam’s flat.

Ms Hayes added that tests showed the knife contained the DNA of Mr Browne-Evans, Boy A and Shaw.

Mr Browne-Evans said he did not stab Mr Broadbent.

On Monday, both Boy A and Shaw also said they did not stab him.

Ms Hayes said she will use the inquest to try and establish who stabbed him and why - and whether it was lawful or not.

The inquest continues.

Mr Browne-Evans and Boy A were initially charged with murdering Mr Broadbent - but the Crown Prosecution Service later said convictions were not realistic and the charges against them were dropped.