Cambridgeshire

Mystery after welder drank 'fatal' levels of caffeine

Huntingdon Coroners Court
Image caption The coroner said it was "unclear" how Mr Sandelewski had consumed so much caffeine

A welder died after consuming deadly levels of caffeine in the hours before his death, an inquest heard.

Lucasz Sandelewski, 36, was found unresponsive at a house in Scotney Street, Peterborough, in December 2019.

The Polish national had ingested a more than three times-fatal amount while making lengthy phone calls in the middle of the night, it was said.

Coroner Sean Horstead said it was "unclear how or by what means" he had taken the stimulant.

The documentary inquest, held in Huntingdon via Skype, heard how Mr Sandelewski had returned home at around 01:00 GMT on 5 December, and was heard "shouting and talking loudly" on the telephone until around 07:00.

'Unintended consequence'

In the evening, his concerned mother contacted one of his housemates because she hadn't heard from him.

Mr Sandelewski was discovered face down on a mattress in his room, Mr Horstead said, which was "very cluttered with lots of empty drinking vessels on the floor".

"It's unclear how or by what means the deceased consumed very significant levels of caffeine but caffeine toxicity is the cause of his death," he said.

"It was the unintended consequence of a deliberate act.

"He deliberately consumed a significant and fatal quantity of caffeine but I'm satisfied the consequences of that weren't intended by him."

A post-mortem examination found Mr Sandelewski had a blood caffeine concentration of 282 micrograms of caffeine per millilitre of blood.

Any level above 80 micrograms per millilitre of blood can be fatal, the inquest heard.

He was also "not dramatically" over the drink drive limit, although friends said he did "drink quite a bit of alcohol".

Mr Horstead said there was no evidence that the welder intended to end his life - and there was no suicide note. Police also found no visible injuries.

He recorded a verdict of misadventure.

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