BRITAIN - A 16-year-old boy was killed by a lethal cocktail of ecstasy and ketamine at a music festival in Coventry, a coroner ruled. Coventry Coroner Kally Cheema concluded the death of A-Level student Liam Taylor was drug related. Liam, a pupil at Deyes High School, in Maghull , was at the Outbreak music festival at the Ricoh Arena when the tragedy happened last November.
Tragically the court also heard Liam, from Liverpool, had warned his brother and sister about the danger of taking drugs prior to his death. It also emerged that Liam had initially been turned away from the festival on November 1 because it was an over-18s event. But he later gained entry at around midnight after two members of Ricoh Arena security staff handed identification to five people who had not been allowed into the venue initially.
Liam's mum and dad, Natalie and Dean Taylor, were also in the court to hear how Liam initially purchased the tickets not knowing it was an over-18s event. He later decided to travel to the festival and his mother confirmed she told him to phone her if there were any problems.
Det Con Georgina Grey, of West Midlands Police, said CCTV footage secured from the Ricoh Arena showed Liam was brought out from the main stage area at 12.39am on November 2 by an unidentified man and woman. She said he was unable to walk and collapsed and was receiving medical attention when he had a fit. A short time later he was conscious and talking to an on-site doctor and paramedic who continued to treat him. But at 4.02am an ambulance was called after he suffered another seizure. He later died at University Hospital Coventry after suffering a cardiac arrest and respiratory failure.
The pathologist's report showed lethal levels of ecstasy in his system as well as evidence of ketamine use. He concluded while the ecstasy levels were high enough to be fatal the interaction between the two drugs likely led to his respiratory failure and subsequent death. Det Con Grey said: "There are no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death. But due to the cause of death there's an ongoing investigation into who could and would have sold drugs to Liam and how he got into the venue."
The coroner offered her condolences to Liam's parents, family and friends. She said: "The death arose out of the drug substances he took and on that basis I return a conclusion of drug related death. "I would ask you to extend my condolences to his family, his friends and his siblings. It is a very tragic death of a young man with a lot still to achieve in his life. He had talked to his brother and sister about the dangers of taking drugs and it is a shame that he came to his death as a result of taking drugs."
Friends gathered at Maghull Cricket Club after Liam's death to lay flowers, school ties and Liverpool FC scarves for the Reds-mad fan. They also designed special memorial wristbands to raise money for his family.
By Simon Gilbert - The Southport Visitor/Feb. 10, 2014
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