Belfast Telegraph

Man died after his first hit of heroin

By Michael McHugh

A man who died from a heroin overdose may have been using the drug for the first time, an inquest heard.



Gary Marno (25) collapsed at a house in Bangor, Co Down, in February after taking the illicit substance with a friend. He paid £12.50 for the hit which killed him, his friend Stephen Davidson, said.

His sister Jolene Marno told the Belfast inquest he was vehemently against the drug.

She said: “He was a healthy person, he liked to keep fit and look after his body, he just saw this as dirt, it would have been something that he was against.”

Assistant state pathologist Dr Alistair Bentley said there were few signs of habitual heroin use.

He said the victim, a trainee chef from the Lakelands, Craigavon, may have been abstaining for a period of time and lost his level of tolerance or may not have taken it before.

Mr Davidson said they bought the drug from a dealer in the Botanic Avenue area of Belfast for £25, the cost split two ways. They returned to Mr Davidson's home in Whitehill Pass, Bangor, and took the drug.

Belfast Coroner Brian Sherrard found that the victim was “entirely new” to heroin use when he injected himself and subsequently died from heroin toxicity.

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