Singer’s death ‘may have been accident’
PRODIGY star Keith Flint took a cocktail of drugs before his death but may not have meant to take his own life, a coroner has ruled in the UK.
The 49-year-old was found dead at his home in Essex, southeast of London, on March 4.
An inquest in Chelmsford, Essex, has heard the performer was found "by a friend" after taking codeine and alcohol, reports The Sun.
But Essex Senior Coroner, Caroline Beasley-Murray, said there wasn't enough evidence to determine he committed suicide and recorded an open conclusion.
Ms Beasley-Murray said that he may have been "larking around and it went horribly wrong".
She also found insufficient evidence to conclude his death was an accident and said: "We will never quite know what was going on in his mind on that date."
Flint's family and manager were aware of the hearing but did not wish to attend.
The hearing was held in their absence, with no witnesses called to give evidence in person.
Ms Beasley-Murray said police attended the much-loved singer's home and found there were no suspicious circumstances and no third-party involvement.
Explaining how she reached her conclusion, she said, "I've considered suicide.
We will never quite know what was going on in his mind on that date and so that's why I'm going to record an open conclusion.
"To record that, I would have to have found that, on the balance of probabilities, Mr Flint formed the idea and took a deliberate action knowing it would result in his death.
"Having regard to all the circumstances I don't find that there's enough evidence for that."
She added: "I'm going to conclude an open conclusion.
"We will never quite know what was going on in his mind on that date and so that's why I'm going to record an open conclusion.
"He clearly was extremely popular, he was much-loved by so many fans.
"It's been very touching to see that, and of course I'm aware of the funeral service that was held in Bocking."
'RAISED THE ROOF'
Music fans travelled from all over the world, including Australia, to gather outside St Mary's church in Bocking for Flint's funeral on March 29.
His tearful wife joined hundreds of The Prodigy fans as they "raised the roof" to send off the music legend with a massive rave during his funeral.
A huge crowd danced through the streets as his coffin was pulled to his local church.
Festival flags were flown and floral tributes piled up in the churchyard including one of the band's ant logo.
Flint fought a long battle with alcohol, drugs and depression, however he previously said his wife had "saved him" from his party lifestyle.
In March, The Sun reported that Flint had been in a "serious relationship" with mum-of-three Faye Kelbie, 43.
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The pair met through friends in their village in Essex and one friend said: "Faye is absolutely devastated. For over two years, Keith was a huge part of her life and she adored him.
"They split up because she struggled with the amount of time he was touring.
"Faye just wishes she had known the extent of his unhappiness and mental health issues - she would have done all she could to help.
"But the feeling is that Keith made his mind up to end things weeks ago."
Flint rose to fame in the 1990s in the Brit Award-winning electronic band, who were known for hits including Firestarter and Breathe.
They released their latest album No Tourists in November, their seventh consecutive number one record.
Prodigy bandmate Liam Howlett said he was "heartbroken" following the news.
He said: "The news is true, I can't believe I'm saying this but our brother Keith took his own life over the weekend.
"I'm shell shocked, f***ing angry, confused and heart broken r.i.p brother."
He was described in a statement by bandmates Liam Howlett and Maxim as "a true pioneer, innovator and legend".
They said Flint was their "brother and best friend" and "he will be forever missed".
He had participated in the five-kilometre Chelmsford Central parkrun on March 2, posting a personal best time of 21 minutes and 22 seconds.