A man was speared to death by shards of glass after pushing his girlfriend through a shop window in London’s West End, an inquest heard
Steven Oddy, 31, threw his partner against a plate glass window several times before the pane shattered, raining down deadly inch-thick fragments on him.
One sliced through Mr Oddy’s left lung and pierced his liver.
He bled to death within minutes, Westminster Coroner’s Court heard.
His un-named 30-year-old girlfriend also suffered multiple cuts in the tragedy outside the Banana Republic clothes store in Regent Street.
Eyewitness Bradley Beck-Hill said he was on his way back from work at Oxford Circus when he noticed a semi-naked man on August 11 this year.
‘I was walking along Argyll Street but as I turned a corner I could see a man with no top on run towards a girl.
‘Both went through a shop window.
‘For what seemed ages, but was only a split second, his legs were hanging out of the window.
‘The top of the window was just hanging there, quivering and then dropped.
‘It seemed as though the man had already fallen out of the shop. I thought the girl had been hit.
‘When I got over to them, she was climbing out of the shop.
‘I could see the man had massive lacerations to the back of him. Parts of his internal organs were hanging out.’
Electrican Don Fox said he was walking along Great Marlborough Street when he saw the glass give way.
‘I could see the male lying on top of the female. As he attempted to reverse out of the shop parts of the glass began to fall down on him.
‘Both the male and female attempted to get up but only the female managed to.
‘Glass was continuously falling. It was a very large shop window.’
Paramedics were in Regents Street within minutes but by then Mr Oddy, who lived in a hostel in Great Chapel Street, Soho, was already dead.
He had lost so much blood his circulation had stopped minutes after the accident.
Verdict: Death by misadventure.
Eyewitness Don Fox said he heard shouting immediately before the shop window shattered.
‘I was walking along Great Marlborough Street when my attention was drawn to a male and female I recognised from around Soho.
‘[Steven Oddy] grabbed hold of the female by both arms. He pushed her against the glass frontage of the shop. He did this a couple of times.
‘The glass gave way, causing them both to fall through into the store.
‘I could see the male lying on top of the female.’
But there was nothing Mr Fox could do to help as shards of glass rained down on the couple.
Police Inspector Guy Wilson arrived at the scene minutes later and spoke to Mr Oddy’s partner:
‘She looked like she was in shock,’ he said.
‘Her eyes were wide open.
‘A black male [Mr Fox] came up to us and said she wasn’t to blame as ‘she did nothing wrong’.
Insp Wilson said the 30-year-old woman showed him her fingers with bite marks on.
She told him that two nights ago Mr Oddy had bitten her, adding: ‘Last night he had me round the neck.’
The woman told the police officer she had visited him at the Chapel Street hostel but they had started to argue as they walked along Great Marlborough Street.
A post mortem revealed Mr Oddy was nearly four times the drink drive limit at the time of the incident.
He had 314 milligrammes of alcohol in his blood per 100 millilitres. The legal limit for driving is 80 milligrammes.
He had also been smoking cannabis.
The report concluded Mr Oddy died after a triangular shard of glass measuring 20cm at the base pierced his chest and left lung, before lodging in his liver, causing massive blood loss.
Coroner Dr Paul Knapman said Mr Oddy led a troubled life, resorting to drink and drugs after problems with bullying at school.
He said the ‘terribly graphic tragedy’ followed an argument and then pushing.
‘Shards of glass descended like a curtain on top of [Mr Oddy].
‘It’s not necessary to dwell on the matters surrounding the violent death.
‘He died from loss of blood before the ambulance could save him. He died from lacerations to his liver and lung.’
Mr Oddy’s partner, who is unwell, did not attend the hearing, nor did his family, who live at Ockford Ridge, Godalming, Surrey.
Verdict: Death by misadventure.