Mystery remains over how father-to-be was found dead in Musselburgh harbour, says coroner
21 May 2019, 15:36 | Updated: 21 May 2019, 15:38
How a vulnerable father-to-be came to be found dead in a harbour remains unknown, a coroner has said.
Loved ones of 25-year-old Darran Everett contacted Police Scotland after he disappeared from his partner's home in Musselburgh in October 2017.
When his body was recovered the next day he was not immediately identified, and his partner continued to phone police to see if he had been taken into custody.
In the days beforehand, Mr Everett - whose address was given as Kylo Place, Newbiggin Hall, Newcastle upon Tyne - had been released from HMP Barlinnie, and he had been arrested following a disturbance, taken to hospital and attacked a nurse.
Before he was released, he told police he had tried to use a ligature on himself in prison.
On October 12, days before his partner was due to give birth to their daughter, Mr Everett left her flat.
The inquest at Newcastle Civic Centre heard that his body was found the next day in the sea near Musselburgh Harbour and that he had drowned.
A Police Investigations Review Commissioner report was ordered into Police Scotland's handling of the case.
Assistant Coroner Andrew Hetherington heard that police found no CCTV evidence of how Mr Everett got from the flat to the sea.
The last confirmed sighting was at 7pm on October 12, though his mother Violet told the inquest she had been told by police that a woman had seen someone looking like Mr Everett with a dog at 1pm on the day his body was found.
The coroner said this was an uncorroborated sighting.
A Police Scotland detective had been expected to give evidence at the hearing, but "sadly forgot" to attend, the coroner said.
He added that he had spoken to the detective on the phone and asked him questions ahead of the inquest.
The coroner recorded an open conclusion, saying: "The exact circumstances of how he (Mr Everett) came to be there (in the water) remain unknown."
Ms Everett did not wish to comment after the hearing.