A CAERLEON man fell to his death while smoking a cigarette on his bedroom window sill after drinking alcohol, an inquest heard yesterday.
Gwent Coroner’s Court sitting at Newport heard Jonathan Lee Brace, 33, a computer software engineer, died after falling 20ft from his bedroom window at Harrow Close, Caerleon.
His mother, Carolyn Helena Brace, told the court how on the evening of Friday November 23 last year, her son had returned home at around 8.45pm after having a pint with friends after work.
She added Mr Brace was living at the family home in order to save money for a trip to Australia to see his brother.
As part of his drive to save money for the trip, Mr Brace stopped going out and instead would buy beer to drink in his room while playing on his Xbox.
After showering Mr Brace retired to his room to play on his Xbox.
Mrs Brace told the inquest she had repeatedly warned her son to stop smoking while sitting on his bedroom window sill with the window open, something he continued to do as he was not allowed to smoke in the house.
The following morning Mrs Brace shouted to her son, but when that got no response she entered his room. She said: "I walked in and I could see he wasn’t in the room, but that the window was open.
"My worst fears were realised."
Mrs Brace then said she went downstairs and outside to find her son’s body lying on the patio.
Consultant pathologist Nicholas Dallimore, from the Royal Gwent Hospital, carried out a postmortem examination on November 26, and found Mr Brace died as a result of a head injury.
His report added that the injury was so severe Mr Brace’s death would have been almost instantaneous.
The report also found Mr Brace had a blood alcohol level of 188 per cent, twice the legal level allowed to drive.
Gwent Coroner David Bowen said: "The amount of alcohol is significant enough to make a person less careful than they are normally.
"Mr Brace sat on the window sill to have a cigarette, before he overbalanced and fell to his death on the concrete below.
"This was something quite unintended and unexpected. I am sure he sat there many times before on many occasions."
Mrs Brace added: "It was one time too many."
The coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death.