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Debenham birthday celebration ended in tragedy

Suffolk Coroners Court
Suffolk Coroners Court

A Debenham man suffered a fatal head injury when he fell down stairs at his home following his 50th birthday celebration, an inquest has heard.

Russell Lock had spent the evening with 50 friends and family members at Debenham Leisure Centre on February 4.

Today (Monday) an inquest at Suffolk Coroners Court in Ipswich was told that after getting home shortly after midnight, Mr Lock had been on his way to use a downstairs bathroom when he fell down the stairs.

As neighbours, including an off duty nurse and an ambulance technician,tried to help at the house in Raedwald Way, an ambulance arrived and took Mr Lock to Ipswich Hospital.

In a statement, Mr Lock’s wife Sarah said: “It was clear he had really hurt himself. I couldn’t get a response from him.

“I hoped he had just knocked himself out but this was clearly not the case.”

The inquest heard that a scan revealed that Mr Lock had sustained a “devastating” brain injury which he was unlikely to survive, said assistant Suffolk coroner Daniel Sharpstone.

Mr Lock was later transferred to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge where he died the same morning.

The cause of death was given as severe traumatic brain injury and falling down stairs.

Mrs Lock said in her statement that their son Nathan had been using the bathroom of their home after acting as DJ for the celebration evening her husband said he was going to use a downstairs toilet.

Moments later she heard a loud noise and then found her husband at the foot of the stairs, said Mrs Lock.

Assistant Suffolk coroner Dr Sharpstone recorded a conclusion that Mr Lock died as a result of severe traumatic brain injury from the consequences of falling down stairs.

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