Mystery over death of homeless man on Newquay beach

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An inquest this week heard there was mystery over the death of a homeless man who drowned while sleeping rough on a Newquay beach.

William Horgan, 62, a former builder, was discovered on 4 November last year in an alcove on Great Western Beach in Cornwall, a spot where he often used to sleep.

According to the Newquay Voice, two people walking their dog stumbled across his body and called the police.

A post mortem revealed he had drowned and his blood alcohol was three times the drink-drive limit.

But the Cornwall Coroners Court on Monday said that, while the tides were high, Mr Horgan could have avoided the incoming water.

Detective Constable Adam Barfield, of Newquay CID, said he thought Mr Horgan may have hit his head after falling in the dark. But the post mortem showed no sign of trauma, reports This Is Cornwall.

Furthermore, officers who attended the scene where his body was found reported seeing injuries consistent with assault, but the pathologist recorded no sign of an attack.

Recording an open verdict, coroner Barrie Van Den Berg told This Is Cornwall: "We're never going to know what happened to him. No one witnessed it or saw what happened. He was nearly three times the legal driving limit, which wouldn't have helped if something did go wrong."

Mt Horgan had a history of alcoholism and started sleeping rough after his wife died in 2002.

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