A SOUTHAMPTON man who died after taking a fatal level of morphine could have been dead up to five days before he was found, an inquest heard.

Peter Moore was discovered by his neighbour who became concerned after not seeing him for a number of days.

Martin Ryves discovered the 48-year-old’s body between the bed and bedroom wall of his flat in Hurstbourne Place, Weston (pictured) after crawling through an unlocked window.

Winchester Coroner’s Court heard that Mr Moore’s flat had been in a messy state, with dog excrement on the floor, when he was found.

Pathologist Dr Vidhi Bhargava added that the body was “heavily decomposed” which limited the post-mortem examination.

A toxicology report revealed evidence of a small amount of alcohol in his body, along with a prescription drug and levels of morphine “far in excess” of the range associated with death.

The inquest heard that Mr Moore had been in the care of Southern Health Mental Health Trust for a number of years, and had suffered from a mental health condition, chronic pain and alcohol dependency. He had not been in contact with his daughter for a number of years.

Although records indicated he had been abstaining from alcohol, the inquest heard empty whisky bottles were found in his home, and neighbours believed he had been a regular drinker.

Recording a conclusion of drugs-related death, senior coroner Grahame Short said: “I think it would be fair to say he had a troubled life.”

He added that he could not be certain when Mr Moore died, but said it was sometime between October 2 and the afternoon of October 7, the day he was found.