Tragic teen who drowned in a lake couldn't swim and hated open water, inquest hears

A teenager who drowned in a Wigan lake could not swim and did not like large bodies of water, an inquest has heard.

Eighteen-year-old Samson Price’s body was found in Westwood Lodge, near to Wigan Flashes, by emergency services on Sunday October 4, 2020.

An inquest at Bolton Coroner’s Court on the morning of Tuesday May 3 heard he had been fishing the night before with other young men and did not return to his home in Goose Green when expected.

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His mother Rosanna Price recalled receiving a phone call from Samson’s cousin Kane Jones at 1.30pm on October 4 to say he was missing.

Samson Price

She said: “I knew, I don’t know if it was mother’s intuition or something else, but I knew he was gone.”

She rushed to Westwood Lodge with her husband Samson Price Snr to search for him.

Samson’s body was later found in the water by emergency services, but he had died.

Home Office forensic pathologist Dr Philip Lumb carried out a post-mortem examination which revealed Samson had died by drowning.

A floral shrine near to where Samson Price lost his life

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There were no defensive injuries or anything to suggest he had been assaulted, but Dr Lumb said he could not rule out a push or other assault which had not left a mark.

Toxicology tests showed Samson had taken a cocktail of drugs, including cocaine, cannabis and an “LSD-like substance” named bromo-DMA.

But the drugs did not kill him, the court heard.

Samson’s family described him as never sitting still, rarely upset and a good friend.

He loved rugby and wanted to become a heating engineer.

The court heard he had never learned to swim and did not really like water.

Mr Price said: “He hated large bodies of water. He really didn’t like water.

"He didn’t even have a bath at home, he would only use the shower.”

Samson had sent text messages to his father and sister Atlanta shortly before 7.30pm on October 3, but they did not hear from him again.

Following Samson’s death, police initially treated it as a murder and three suspects were arrested, but eventually they were released without charge.

The inquest continues on Tuesday afternoon.