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Family's pain as inquest adjourned after just one day

By Lesley-Anne McKeown

Published 28/09/2016

Sean Paul Carnahan
Sean Paul Carnahan

The family of a tragic young chef have spoken of their regret that his inquest has been adjourned a day after it opened.

Sean Paul Carnahan, from Beechmount Grove in west Belfast, died in July 2013, five months after he was admitted to Belfast City Hospital with a severe brain injury after a failed suicide attempt.

His death is shrouded in controversy amid allegations the 22-year-old starved to death.

In a statement, solicitor Aiden Carlin said the Carnahan family "share coroner Joe McCrisken's regret at having to adjourn Sean Paul's inquest" until further notice.

"The coroner was expected to hear from 36 witnesses including senior doctors and nurses this week," he said. "However, it is understood that so much is bound up with the subject of the deceased's nutrition that further medical evidence may now be required."

Mr Carnahan's mother Tracey Carnahan has spearheaded the family's long-running campaign for an inquest.

Mr Carlin added: "Our client's grief and sense of loss is very raw."

According to medical documents presented during the opening day of the inquest at Belfast Coroner's Court, Mr Carnahan's weight dropped from 74kg on admission to just 32kg at the time of the post-mortem examination.

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