Cookstown man’s death linked to ‘lethal’ legal high overdose

Connor Lagan
Connor Lagan

The death of a Cookstown man has been linked to an overdose of what has been described as a ‘lethal’ legal high.

21-year-old Connor Lagan died on September 2nd last year after an overdose of a new drug known as a “speckled cherry”, a Coroner has ruled.

The lethal legal high has already claimed over 20 deaths in Northern Ireland and Coroner John Leckey warned “We may not have seen the last of these fatalities,”

Mr Leckey described the inquest into Cookstown man Connor Lagan as “one of a series” into related drug fatalities. “They are all young people who died. What a waste,” he said.

The dangerous drug also claimed the life of 18-year-old Dungannon girl Alice Devlin, who died on August 10 last year after taking the drug.

Connor took an overdose of a drug he thought to be mephedrone or ecstasy at a friend’s house.

A court heard how he had been at a weekend house party where drugs were “readily available” with ecstasy tablets sold at £6 a pill, according to statements made to police.

Connor later asked a friend to call an ambulance, and he died during treatment at A&E in Antrim Area Hospital.

Mr Leckey said: “The problem with the drugs is that you can take them and live and next time you can take them and die.

“The effects are totally unpredictable. There is no such thing as a safe drug - it’s really Russian roulette. For all we know these substances are still being sold out there.”