A WINCHESTER man with a ‘heart of gold’ took a deliberate overdose after struggling to cope with a number of stressful events in his life, an inquest heard.

Elias Mazani had been suffering from chronic pain after two separate assaults left him with leg injuries and a work place incident left him with back problems.

However, Winchester Coroner’s Court heard that the 32-year-old, originally from Zimbabwe, had also been struggling to cope after a new relationship broke down, his benefit payments were cut, and he was concerned about an upcoming medical operation.

Mr Mazani had previously been living in Southampton, where the attacks took place, but moved to Winchester in the hope that it might solve some of his problems.

The inquest heard that his friend and former partner Emma Hills, whom he had lived with in Southampton for a number of years, rushed to his flat in Imber Road, Winnall, Winchester, on December 8 after receiving concerning text messages including fears of being followed and a reference to making a will.

Ms Hills, who described Mr Mazani as having a “heart of gold”, said that “his mood could be low sometimes” and that he had nightmares as a result of the assaults.

She added: “He felt the world was against him. His benefits changed regularly and he struggled with that.

“He did gamble sometimes and that would put him in a low mood.”

Ms Hills said that she was unable to get hold of Mr Mazani on the day he died, and was let into the building where he lived by a neighbour, although the key had been left inside the lock to Mr Mazani’s flat to stop anyone from getting in.

Police were called to break down the door, and they found Mr Mazani surrounded by alcohol and medication. Despite attempts to revive him, he was declared dead at the scene.

Consultant pathologist Dr Adnan Al-Badri told the inquest that fatal levels of Mr Mazani’s prescription medication were found in his body, along with alcohol.

Recording a conclusion of suicide, senior Central Hampshire coroner Grahame Short said Mr Mazani had a history of depression: “In the period before leading up to his death he was feeling low in mood for a number of reasons.”

Mr Short added that the evidence, which included instructions for family members about his possessions, indicated Mr Mazani was “making preparations” for his death, although there was no suicide note.

He also said that he had “no reason to believe” Mr Mazani was being followed prior to his death.