Tributes paid to ‘affectionate’ son who died aged 22

Suffolk Coroners Court in Ipswich Picture: ADAM HOWLETT

Suffolk Coroners Court in Ipswich Picture: ADAM HOWLETT - Credit: Archant

The mother of an “affectionate” 22-year-old who overdosed on a cocktail of drugs has been told his death was not murder.

Ryan Hayward, from Great Waldingfield, was found dead in a house in Girling Street in Sudbury on May 16, 2019 by a friend who took him in after finding the 22-year-old slumped outside his home.

An inquest into his death, which took place yesterday at Suffolk Coroner’s Court in Ipswich, heard how the father-of-one was conscious when he was found and managed to eat some food before falling asleep on his friend’s sofa.

He had earlier been discovered by the police in a “drug sleep” in the passenger seat of a car, but was woken and spoke to officers before walking off.

His mother, Julie Hayward, described her son as “the apple of her eye”. She said he was “very affectionate” and was “cheeky” as a child, with brown hair and “big brown eyes”.

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However, at a young age his parents realised he struggled to speak and he was later diagnosed with delayed development and ADHD.

Ms Hayward said she “lost him” when her son was prevented from living with his young child.

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The court heard how Mr Hayward was found by his friend on the morning of May 16 and was given CPR while they waited for the emergency services to arrive at the first-floor flat.

Despite the attempts to revive him, he was pronounced dead by paramedics when they arrived.

Suffolk police were also called to the house to investigate the death, which was treated as suspicious at the time.

Detective Sergeant Paul Cappleman, who led the investigation said there was no evidence that a third party was involved, however Ms Hayward still believes her son was murdered.

A toxicology report showed more than 10 drugs, or by-products of drugs, were found in his blood, stomach and urine at the time of his death. Ms Hayward said that the list included a drug which she knew he would not “willingly or knowingly” take.

Concluding the inquest, area coroner Jacqueline Devonish said Mr Hayward had died as a consequence of a drug related death caused by multiple drug toxicity.

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