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Saturday, 20 December 2014

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Death of 37-year-old Carlisle man still a mystery

Mystery surrounds the death of a 37-year-old man who collapsed after opening ‘Pandora’s box’.

Jason Airey was found slumped unconscious by his parents in the bedroom of their Carlisle home in May this year. A box bearing the words ‘Pandora’s box’ was beside him.

An inquest into his death heard how no drugs were found in his system and the box – which bore the inscription in red letters – contained unused synthetic cannabis.

Coroner Robert Chapman said a post mortem showed Jason’s heart had stopped beating, causing his organs to fail – but they would probably never know why. He never regained consciousness and died in the Cumberland Infirmary two days later.

His father, Dennis Airey, told the inquest that Jason, who had worked at Cavaghan and Gray and Metal Box, had been in a happy mood when he returned to the family home in Crossways, Harraby, on May 2.

“He was just his normal self,” he said. “I think he had enjoyed himself in town. He had been shopping and said he was going upstairs to get changed.”

Mr Airey said his wife Anne got concerned when Jason had been upstairs for some time.

“She went upstairs and came back down saying something was wrong. She couldn’t wake him.”

Mr Airey went upstairs and found his son slumped on his knees, face down. “I got hold of him and his shirt was clammy. His face was blue. I could feel a faint pulse on his neck,” he said.

Paramedics and an ambulance was called and Mr Airey started CPR, he said. The paramedics worked on Jason, a former Inglewood and Harraby secondary school pupil, for an hour before he was taken to hospital.

His father said he found “a little packet” inside ‘Pandora’s box’ and thought it was cannabis but “it didn’t smell”. Mr Chapman said tests later revealed it was synthetic cannabis.

“I thought [the box] had just been opened,” Mr Airey said.

“It was a packet but had not been used. It was on the bed right beside him.

“He hadn’t taken any drugs after having a bad experience with ecstasy 13 years ago.”

Mr Chapman said toxicology tests had found no trace of drugs in Jason’s system and ruled that he died of natural causes.

“His heart stopping caused the death of his brain which caused multiple organ failure,” he said. “We don’t really know what caused his heart to stop.

“There is a possibility that he had a fatal cardiac arrythymia – a change in his heartbeat.”

Pandora’s box is an artefact in Greek mythology which contained all the evils of the world.

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