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An inquest was held yesterday afternoon at the residence of Mr L. A. Durreu, Mt. Eden Eoad, into the death of Alfred Driver, who had committed suicide by taking prussic acid on Sunday. Dr. MeArthur, coroner, conducted the inquiry, and Sergeant Walker represented the police. Evidence was given by Louis A. Durrieu, Dr. N. McK. Grant, George Martin (chemist), Chas. E. Poulter (chemist's assistant), and Constable Hinton. The evidence showed the deceased was a remittance man, and his occupation was that of a grocer's assistant. Latterly he had been out of employment, but he was- to have gone to a billet in Mr Smeeton's store yesterday. Tor some time last year deceased was m the Avondale Lunatic Asylum. Some weeks ago, when lodging at Mt. Eden, he discussed with Mr Durrieu the question of suiciding, saying that1 he should have a voice in the matter as to whether he should live or die, and subsequently he made remarks about a painless death. Dr. Grant's evidence showed that death was most probably due to taking prussic acid. George Martin, chemist, of Mt. Eden Road, said that the deceased had recently tried to buy prussic acid and other poisons from him, but witness would not sell him any, as he thought from Driver's manner that he was not qufte sane. Driver said he wanted to poison some cats. Witness would not sell him any, and he told Driver^ it was a very dangerous drug. On Friday evening he came in with a small phial of prussic acid, and showed it to witness. Witness would not sell prussic acid to anyone, except professional men. Chas. E. Poulter, assistant to J. M. Jefferson, chemist, Syinonds street, said that on Friday evening- last Driver came in, accompanied by a lady, and bought 1/ worth of prussic acid, saying he wanted it to poison a cat. Witness had told Mm he must bring a witness with him when buying the poison, and Driver thereupon brought in the lady. DHver signed the register, and witness went up to the lady to get her to sign it also, but she had left the shop, and she did not sign it. He did not know who she was. Constable Hinton also gave evidence. The jury returned a verdict that death resulted from the effects of taking prussic acid, deceased being temporarily insane at the time.

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Bibliographic details

THE MT. EDEN SUICIDE., Auckland Star, Volume XXXI, Issue 83, 10 April 1900

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THE MT. EDEN SUICIDE. Auckland Star, Volume XXXI, Issue 83, 10 April 1900

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