Children’s TV presenter Natasha Collins died in a scalding bath following a huge cocaine binge, an inquest heard yesterday.
A postmortem revealed that Natasha, 31, had taken a large amount of the drug during a two-day bender with fiance Mark Speight, who fronted the BBC children’s show SMarts.
The amount of cocaine in her blood was five times higher than the level considered potentially fatal. Coroner Dr Paul Knapman said: “This is a very significant amount.”
The inquest heard that both Natasha and Mark took sleeping tablets after the binge at their flat in St John’s Wood, North London, and went to bed.
During the night Natasha got up and took a bath. Mark found her dead hours later.
The actress also showed signs of long-term cocaine use as the drug had made a hole in the inner middle part of her nose, the septum.
Dr Knapman said Natasha, who appeared with Mark on the TV show See It Saw It, had 60 per cent scalds.
He said: “It is more likely than not she had some heart problem in the bath that caused her to lose consciousness.
But, he added: “Even if the hot tap had not been going she took sufficient cocaine to kill people anyway.
“She had a combination where a likely bad situation is made worse.”
He recorded a verdict of misadventure, saying Natasha’s death was due to the toxicity of the cocaine and the scalding.
In a statement issued afterwards, Mark, who was initially arrested on suspicion of murder but later cleared, said he was ‘devastated’ at the death of his fiancee.