A MAN whose body was found on the driveway of his Ellesmere Port home had suffered a heart attack prior to his death, an inquest heard.
Christopher John Sheard, 48, died from injuries consistent with a fall, including a severe head wound resulting in immediate bleeding, fractured ribs and minor injuries to his arms and knees, the Chester hearing was told.
The post-mortem report also revealed Mr Sheard had a heart problem and suffered an attack, although it is unclear exactly when.
The injuries to his arm and knees indicated he had been rolling round on the driveway before he died.
Mr Sheard’s body was discovered outside his home on Woodsome Drive, Whitby, at about 9.15am on May 2 by Michael MacMillan, who had come to carry out work on the loft of a nearby house, and neighbour Gary Basnett.
Mr MacMillan said as he walked half way up the drive he could see the blood around the body and noticed the garage door was ajar with blood on the door and fence and Mr Sheard’s keys on the floor.
Mr Sheard had spent the previous night in the Woodlands public house watching a Liverpool football match.
Cheryl Jones, who was the pub’s bar supervisor at the time, said Mr Sheard was a regular who would drink in there two or three times a week.
She finished her shift at 5pm but stayed in the pub to watch the match with friends and was joined by Mr Sheard for the penalty shoot-out, describing him as being “merry” rather than drunk.
Mr Sheard was not seen leaving the pub and there is a gap in his movements from the end of the match to when he was found dead next morning.
A man was seen falling to the floor in Woodland Road by a couple driving back to their home in Underwood Drive having spent the night at Whitby Sports and Social Club.
But as they did not know Mr Sheard they could not be sure it was definitely him.
Constable Steve Marsland told the inquest police initially treated the discovery of the body as a potential murder inquiry.
But with no evidence of third party involvement, PC Marsland said police were satisfied there had been no foul play, although due to a gap in Mr Sheard’s movements from the pub to his driveway, they could not be 100% certain.
Mr Sheard lived at the house with his mother Brenda and worked part-time as a doorman at Whitby Sports and Social Club.
He is said to have suffered from depression as a result of relationship problems and was taking medication.
Mrs Sheard said: “He had a big circle of friends. His condition improved slightly but it was going to be a long process.”
She was visiting her daughter in Birmingham when her son’s body was discovered.
Verdict: Misadventure contributed to by naturally occurring heart disease.