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Man found dead days after arrest

Staffordshire | News | Published:

A man was found dead in the canal just days after he had been arrested and bailed by police, an inquest heard.

Anthony Gennard was seen by passers-by at Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal in Kinver earlier this summer.

The 45 year-old from Kingswinford had previously suffered from depression but there were no known issues since 2009, Cannock Coroner's Court heard.

Emergency services were called after reports a body was in the canal on July 5 this year. After he was removed he was found with bail paper documents from West Midlands Police.

A post mortem recorded showed Mr Gennard, of Blewitt Street, Pensnett as a result of dry drowning. It appeared he had been submerged at some point.

The inquest was told he had been arrested and taken to Brierley Hill police station on July 3.

He was bailed the same day and it is believed the single man, who lived with his brother, did not return home. Family members who called the station were not informed about the developments.

The case has since been referred to police professional standards.

DS Adrian Webb, from Staffordshire Police which investigated the death, said it was believed that he had suffered suicide thoughts previously.

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But it is now known if he had those thoughts again or fell, although third party involvement was ruled out.

Staffordshire coroner Andrew Haigh recorded a verdict of death due to being found drowned.

"What I have been told, Anthony Gennard was only 45 when he died so a comparitively young man.

"On July 3 Andrew was arrested by West Midlands Police and on that day was bailed at 3.25pm

"He has travelled to the Staffordshire and Worcester canal and has entered the water, precisely where he has entered the water was can't say.

"His body is found in Staffordshire, near Kinver on July 5 approximately six miles from the police station. While it is likely it is a suicide I am not sure."

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