Carer 'hid' tablets when epilepsy man died of natural causes

Carer 'hid' tablets when epilepsy man died of natural causes

Carer 'hid' tablets when epilepsy man died of natural causes

First published in News Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , T&A Reporter

AN INQUEST into an epileptic man's death has heard how his care worker panicked and 'hid' tablets that should have been taken earlier that day.

Paramedics called to Edward Duffy's supported housing flat in Briardale Road, Heaton, Bradford, on July 14, 2012 told police they had spotted the tablets in an individual box on a window sill, but when they had looked again just five to ten minutes later they had gone.

Mr Duffy, who had severe epilepsy and suffered up to three or four attacks a week, is believed to have died from natural causes after suffering a drop-attack and falling into the back of his door.

Yesterday's inquest heard it was the epilepsy that had killed him, not any of the minor injuries he received in the fall or missing tablets. But his sudden death had triggered a police investigation and a forensic post mortem.

Concerns had been raised by paramedics at the scene about the tablets disappearing and that 37-year-old Mr Duffy had been colder than they would have expected, seeing as his care worker Amjad Choudhary told them he had seen him alive just a few hours earlier while he was fixing his TV.

Giving evidence, Detective Sgt Steve Wedge said after checking no one else at the scene had removed the tablets, he joined Mr Choudhary, who had left and was sitting outside in his car.

Det Sgt Wedge said: "I joined him and asked him about the tablets and he produced them from the driver's door pocket. He said he had panicked and was confused but did not elaborate anymore on that."

The inquest heard it was a female care worker from Bradford Supported Living who had first raised the alarm. When she could not get into the flat to check on Mr Duffy, she contacted Mr Choudhary who forced his way in, finding Mr Duffy at the back of the door.

Mr Duffy's family, who were in court, said they accepted it was a natural cause death but had concerns about what the paramedics reported to police.

They said they were worried Mr Choudhary had removed the tablets because he had missed that morning's check. They alleged that checks has been missed before and Mr Duffy had to be hospitalised.

Mr Duffy got 26 hours of care a week from Bradford Supported Housing, which was also his landlord contracted by Bradford Council.

His care workers' duties included prompting him to take his anti-epileptic medication.

However, the fact that morning's tablets had not been taken had not contributed to his death in any way. He had good levels of the medication in his system.

When Assistant Bradford coroner Roger Whittaker called Mr Choudhary to give evidence, it emerged that it was a different Mr Choudhary in court. It was his brother Majid Choudhary, who also works for Bradford Supported Housing, who had been sitting in court.

He said he and his brother had been under the impression that it would be acceptable for just one of them to turn up to the inquest. But Mr Whittaker, visibly annoyed, adjourned the hearing until Friday saying: "I want him here to explain himself."

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