A man who sank into depression and drugs after a serious assault three years ago did not take his own life, an inquest has heard.
Christopher Saxton, 35, was discovered in the recovery position by his father in their home in Knowle Road, Kimberley, on New Year’s Eve last year.
An inquest heard how Mr Saxton had become insular and depressed after he was hit over the head with a hammer while drinking at the Lord Clyde pub in Main Street in February, 2008.
Nottinghamshire police confirmed last week that no one has been caught in connection with the crime.
Coroner Mairin Casey said during an inquest into Mr Saxton’s death that there was not enough evidence to suggest he had taken his own life.
“This is a very sad case of a young man who was the victim of an assault in 2008,” she told the court last Thursday.
“From that point in his life it affected him deeply and he started to use drugs and alcohol.”
A post-mortem examination revealed traces of cocaine in his system as well as alcohol.
The inquest in Nottingham last Thursday heard that Mr Saxton had also battled with underlying anxiety problems, depression and had, in the past, had suicidal thoughts.
The medical cause of death for Mr Saxton was given as aspiration – meaning he had choked on his own vomit – followed by erosive gastritis, which is damage to the lining of the stomach brought on by persistent alcohol consumption.
Ms Casey recorded an open verdict into the case and said that she did not think Mr Saxton had deliberately attempted to take his own life.
“There are too many unanswered questions to be too conclusive about his case,” she said.
At the time of his death, his parents Dawson and Jennifer Saxton spoke to the Advertiser about their son.
Mrs Saxton said: “He was very caring and always put other people before himself, especially his family.”
“He was very protective over me and his dad.”
“He could sometimes come across as being quite a hard person but he was as soft as anything really,” she added.
And Mr Saxton, who had tried in vain to revive his son when he found him, said: “He was a right character and well known in the area.
“He was very loving and would do anything for anybody.”
A 24-year-old man was arrested at an address in Nuthall in 2008 in connection with the attack but was later released on police bail pending further inquiries.
No one has ever been charged with the attack.