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Mystery death probe urged.

DEMANDS have been made for a North West hospital to investigate the mysterious death of a kitchen worker.

Keith John Billington was found electrocuted in his flat at Ashworth Special Hospital in Maghull, Liverpool.

He was discovered after fire officers forced their way into his flat in the hospital's grounds on Sunday, May 26.

Mr Billington, 41, was identified two days later from his dental records by pathologist Dr David Waring.

Mr Billington lived in a staff hostel at the hospital where he worked as a catering storeman.

Sefton coroner Christopher Sumner opened an inquest into the death yesterday and then adjourned it for a full hearing on Tuesday, August 20.

Hospital officials said they had no plans to hold an inquiry into Mr Billington's death. A spokesman for Ashworth Hospital said: ``It is not up to Mr Billington's employers to comment on his death.

``The matter is with the police and the coroner's office who are looking into the incident. We can confirm that he worked here as a catering store manager and that he was found dead in the staff hostel.''

But Bootle MP Joe Benton has demanded that an inquiry examines the circumstances surrounding the incident.

He said: ``I am frankly amazed that the hospital authorities did not see fit to make at least some investigation into the circumstances of this man's death.

``The circumstances that have been described to me suggest a bit more than natural causes and I think it totally warrants a full investigation.

``I will write to the governor of secure care at Ashworth and I hope he will launch an internal inquiry.''
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jun 1, 2002
Words:270
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