herald

Monday 5 December 2016

Girl (19) died after taking pills bought through Facebook

Noel and Enya Roddy at court
Noel and Enya Roddy at court

A teenager died after taking ecstasy a friend bought through Facebook, an inquest has heard.

Coroner Eamon MacGowan criticised our "binge" culture after hearing that Ava Roddy (19) died from a cocktail of illegal drugs and alcohol.

Sligo Coroner's Court heard that Ava, from Boyle, Co Ros- common, was found unresponsive in a mini bus outside the 360 nightclub in Carrick- on-Shannon, Co Leitrim, early on September 30, 2013.

Ava, her older sister Enya and three friends had been invited to a Christening party in Boyle and had bought ecstasy tablets through a contact on Facebook.

Insp Ray Mulderrig told the coroner that gardai identified the two men who supplied the drugs, but a defect in the law meant they could not be prosecuted. He said that anomaly had since been corrected.

The jury heard that one of the girls, Cliona Dooley, approached someone from Carrick-on-Shannon for the drugs the day before the party. The next day, the contact gave her five tablets wrapped in tissue.

The girls met in the home of one of the group and were drinking lager. The ecstasy was distributed and later they went to the Alley Bar in Boyle where they talked about getting more ecstasy.

Ava took an ecstasy tablet in the bar, the jury heard. The group later went to the Club 360 nightclub in Carrick-on-Shannon where witnesses saw Ava barefoot and sitting on the floor. Two staff members said they escorted her outside to get some fresh air. After seeing her embrace another young woman, they assumed she was all right.

The driver of the minibus, Seamus Furey, described it as "the worst night ever working on the bus". He said Ava was agitated, "kicking and banging", so he called an ambulance. When paramedics arrived she was unresponsive.

Misadventure

Consultant pathologist Dr Malcolm Little said toxicology results showed evidence of alcohol and a significant number of drugs including paramethoxamphatamine, ecstasy, and BZP (Benzylpiperazine).

The jury returned a unanimous verdict of death by misadventure.

The coroner said he did not want to lecture society, but he believed "we suffer from a binge society, especially in relation to alcohol".

He extended his sympathy to Ava's father, Noel Roddy.

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