'Intelligent' and 'much-loved' former Chesterfield student died after drugs binge in hotel room

A Derbyshire teenager died after overdosing on a cocktail of drugs in a hotel room, an inquest heard.

Former Chesterfield College student Jonathan Ashton, 19, passed away at his home in Cromford, near Matlock, on March 2.

The inquest was held at Chesterfield Coroner's Court

The inquest was held at Chesterfield Coroner's Court

Chesterfield coroners’ court heard he had taken a variety of different drugs, including cocaine, MDMA, methadone and cannabis in a room at Matlock’s Premier Inn during a binge which began on February 28.

Jonathan and his girlfirend returned to his family home at The Hill, Cromford, on the night of March 1 but he was found dead by his father the following morning.

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Derbyshire assistant coroner Emma Serrano said the cause of death was ‘mixed drugs misuse and toxicity’, including fatal levels of methadone.

The inquest heard Jonathan had been badly affected by the loss of a close friend to a drugs overdose when he was aged only 15.

He had suffered from mental health problems and spent time in hospitals in Sheffield and Nottingham.

Det Con Sarah Sullivan, from Ripley Police Station, said he had also begun to use prescription drugs and ‘explore different highs’.

Jonathan self-harmed and had suffered a serious fall from height in which he broke several bones in his back - leaving him depressed and ‘wanting to give up on life’.

Det Con Sullivan said: “In the past year, however, Jonathan was doing better and wanted to live. He was in a relationship, seemed happy and it was going well.”

He was described during the inquest as ‘intelligent’ and ‘much-loved’.

On February 28, Jonathan and his girlfriend went to visit a friend who was staying at the Premier Inn where they drank cider and took drugs including methadone, MDMA, paracetamol, Diazepam and cannabis.

Ms Serrano said: “Having had no sleep he took cocaine and then at some point left the hotel to return home.”

The coroner said Jonathan did not intend to harm himself as he was ‘happy in himself’ and trying to move on with his life.

Recording a verdict of a drug-related death, Mr Serrano offered her condolences to Jonathan’s family.