Questions remain after inquest into death of Chelsie Dack, 23
- Credit: supplied by Norfolk Police
Mystery still surrounds how a 23-year-old estate agent died after an inquest into her death.
Norfolk assistant coroner Johanna Thompson said she was unable to reach a conclusion into the death of Chelsie Dack following five hours of evidence heard in Norwich on Wednesday.
Miss Dack, from Gorleston, disappeared on April 20, 2020, in the early stages of the coronavirus lockdown.
Her body was found three weeks later on May 11 at Sizewell beach in Suffolk.
The inquest revealed her final and still "unexplained" messages to friends saying she intended to take her own life and asking them to look after her cat Shadow.
It heard how ex-boyfriend Kallem Howard, from Caister, had been arrested for administering a noxious substance but had faced no further action after she told a friend "he gave me something, it is making me really sick".
Giving evidence at the inquest he said they had met for a catch-up on April 19 after he messaged her on Instagram.
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He had gone to her flat in Gorleston High Street for a couple of hours, but when asked directly he strongly denied drugging her, saying: "I wouldn't dream of doing anything like that."
A toxicology report said she had consumed a moderate amount of alcohol, recording a level below the drink drive limit.
Forensic toxicologist Mark Tyler said very low levels of the so-called date drug GHB were also in her system, but they could have been generated by her body after her death.
As part of the investigation all left-over drinks found at the flat were tested for substances but none were detected.
The inquest heard Miss Dack sent multiple and simultaneous messages to friends saying she thought she had been drugged and had been sick, after a full day of exchanging cheery messages and videos with friends and family on various social media platforms.
Evidence of vomit was found at her flat.
She was described as fun and bubbly, with everything to live for, a new boyfriend, a job she loved at Howards Estate Agents in Lowestoft, and plenty of plans for the future.
Everyone who connected with her in the days leading to her disappearance said she was her normal self and that they were at a loss to understand what had happened to change her frame of mind.
On the day she went missing she had been decorating her flat and had treated herself to her favourite Echo Falls tipple as a reward.
Her friend Emma Halls said she had been happy all day, but later her mood changed.
One message said: "I am going to go for a walk. I am going to die. Look after Shadow."
Statements from her parents Matthew Dack and Dawn Howell described her as happy and bubbly and with everything to live for and "beautiful inside and out".
By all accounts she was popular with a wide circle of friends and a close, loving family.
She was generally said to be in "a good place".
Miss Halls said her friend hated walking and she hated the cold and would not usually have walked out into the night at Gorleston in the way she did.
She said: "I have no idea why she would do that. The only thing that I can think is that if she had something in her system that would make her think differently to how she usually would."
Her phone and earphones were found near the Pier Hotel in Gorleston.
Recording a narrative verdict Ms Thompson said there was insufficient evidence to allow her to come to a conclusion.
The medical cause of death was consistent with immersion in water, she said.
There was no evidence to suggest she had consumed or been given GHB in the period before she died, she added.
She said Miss Dack's behaviour on the night of April 19 was "unusual and unexplained" during which she expressed an intention to take her own life.
She added none of the short-form conclusions available to her like accident, suicide, or drug related, were appropriate and offered her sincere condolences to her family.