Methadone overdose killed Brierfield woman (38)

editorial image

A recovering heroin user died from an accidental overdose of methadone.

Kelly Pounder (38) died on March 19th after collapsing at her home in Humphrey Street, Brierfield, an inquest at Burnley Coroner’s Court heard.

The inquest heard evidence from Miss Pounder’s former partner, Mr David Ashley, who said she was living at his house at the time.

He said: “I knew Kelly had problems with drugs and alcohol. I had seen her injecting amphetamine on occasion, and she’d also suffered from hepatitis and asthma.

“We separated in 2011 but she came living at my house. It was a place she could go to get away from her problems.”

Mr Ashley added that, the day before she died, Miss Pounder had been to Burnley and returned around 5am. Her eyes were “all over the place” according to Mr Ashley. The following evening he took her to a pharmacy for her methadone.

Pathologist Dr Walid Salman, who conducted the post-mortem examination, said toxicology tests showed evidence of opiates, indicative of previous heroin use, diazepam and a “quite high level” of methadone.

The methadone levels were consistent with “chronic use or acute overdose,” he said. He gave the cause of death as methadone toxicity.

East Lancashire Deputy Coroner Mr Mark Williams recorded a verdict of accidental death.