A MAN drowned in a canal after drinking heavily and smoking cannabis, an inquest heard.

Shaun Rigby, 21, had three times the drink-drive limit of alcohol and traces of cannabis in his body when he was found in the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Eanam Wharf, Blackburn.


The inquest heard Mr Rigby was noticeably drunk and dropping his phone in Pyramids takeaway in Darwen Street after going on a night out with friends from his workplace, B&M Bargains in Whitebirk.

Assistant East Lancashire coroner Derek Baker was told two boys who saw him in the takeaway gave him some money and called Silver Line Taxis, who refused to take him home.

Eventually City Taxis picked him up but driver Qurban Hussain was only able to take him a short distance, to Jubilee Street, after he said he didn’t have any money, the inquest heard.

Mr Baker was told it is thought he then tried to get home to Devon Road via Eanam Wharf and somehow fell into the water.

Dr Jacob, who carried out a post-mortem examination, said: “He had three times the drink-drive limit of alcohol in his body and there was some cannabis. The combination of the two and the high levels of alcohol would have affected his coordination and attention.”

Mr Rigby was found a few days after he had been reported missing and police told the coroner they had found his phone outside a nearby office complex.

Police also found Mr Rigby’s shoe in the water about 100 yards away from his body after seeing him walking in the area on CCTV.

Mr Rigby’s mum Donna, who lived with him and his younger brother Darren, said: “He didn’t drink regularly.

“He was 21 and he was just obsessed with doing things. “He wanted to be like one of the lads and went out with them once a month.

“He never told me he smoked cannabis but I had my suspicions.”

Tom McCabe, 17, who saw Mr Rigby in Pyramids, said in a statement: “We saw a man who was very drunk and he kept dropping his phone.

“We both felt sorry for him.

“We gave him £4 and called Silver Line Taxis, who refused to take him, and then called City Taxis and put him in. We said get him home safe.”

Recording a verdict of accidental death, Mr Baker, said: “It is clear that Shaun was heavily intoxicated.

“He had also smoked cannabis and they would have affected his balance and coordination.”

“People had sympathy for him and it was king what Tom and his friend Ash did for him.

“It is a great pity that Shaun did not come home. He seemed popular and instantly linkable.

“We may never know the full circumstances but I will conclude this was an accidental death.”