Granddad of Star Hobson died from drugs overdose on mum Frankie Smith’s birthday


Father-of-seven Andrew Smith, 50, suffered a cardiac arrest at his flat and was rushed to hospital but could not be saved. His daughter Frankie Smith was jailed for eight years last month

Andrew Smith, the father of Frankie Smith, 20, mother of Star Hobson,
Andrew Smith died on his daughter’s birthday from a drugs overdose

The father of Frankie Smith – jailed for allowing the death of her daughter Star Hobson – died from a drugs overdose on her birthday last year.

Andrew Smith, a “sociable, loving and very funny” father of seven, died aged 50 on June 16, 2021, at Bradford Royal Infirmary, an inquest has found.

He suffered a cardiac arrest at his flat and was rushed to hospital but could not be saved.

His death came five days after he had discharged himself from hospital against medical advice after a respiratory arrest following a drugs overdose.

A post-mortem examination found toxic levels of methadone – a heroin substitute – in his blood, and this was recorded as his cause of death, Bradford Coroners Court heard.

16-month-old Star was punched to death by her mother’s girlfriend
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Image:

Yvonne Spendley / SWNS)

Star died in September from ‘utterly catastrophic’ injuries

Mr Smith died on Frankie’s 20th birthday.

She was jailed for eight years last month for allowing the death of her 16-month-old daughter Star Hobson.

Her partner Savannah Brockhill was convicted of murdering Star and handed a life sentence with a minimum of 25 years.

A statement from daughter Jade Smith was read out at Bradford Coroner’s Court by Assistant Coroner Angela Brocklehurst during the hearing.

Miss Smith said her father was “sociable, very funny and a bit of a lad”, but in his final years had become “lonely and unhappy”.

He lived with anxiety and depression for many years and also was a long-term drug user, but had constantly tried to beat his addiction and spent long periods sober before relapsing.

“He always tried to escape them but the drugs drew him back in, they gave him an escape when things got tough,” she said.

“I told him to get off the drugs but it was a losing battle. If he could turn back time he would have lived life differently.”

Frankie’s partner, Savannah Brockhill was convicted of murdering Star and handed a life sentence with a minimum of 25 years
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Image:

PA)

Frankie Smith was jailed for eight years for allowing the death of her 16-month-old daughter
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Image:

PA)

She said he was a “loving and caring” father, having regular contact with his children and grandchildren, and when she last spoke to him on June 15, 2021, the day before his tragic death, he had enjoyed a “good day with the kids”.

Frank Smith, Mr Smith’s father, added he was a “good son” but the drugs had “changed him”.

Mr Smith had discharged himself from hospital five days before his tragic passing.

A toxicologist report found “significant amounts of methadone in his blood, way beyond normal levels even for chronic users”.

The court also heard how he had long-term contact with drug misuse services and received ongoing treatment for his addiction.

At the start of 2021 he was drug free but was drinking “a few bottles of whisky a week” and was alerted to the dangers of using alcohol and methadone and offered help which he declined.

An appointment in May 2021 found traces of heroin, cocaine, cannabis and methadone in his urine and he said he had used drugs.

Frankie Smith was jailed in December over Star’s death
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Image:

West Yorkshire Police / SWNS.COM)

On June 10, 2021, he was admitted to Bradford Royal Infirmary with respiratory arrest due to secondary drug overdose and kept in overnight for tests, but discharged himself the following morning against medical advice.

He was then found at home on June 16 having had a cardiac arrest, and his death was recorded at 9.40pm that day at BRI.

In conclusion, Assistant Coroner Mrs Brocklehurst said: “The post-mortem report found this was a methadone related death.

“I find the cause of death was methadone toxicity, and my conclusion is this was a drugs related death.

“My condolences and sympathies go to Mr Smith’s family, Jade painted a picture of a man loved and supported by his family who tried to escape addiction; sadly that was not possible and it brought about his sad death, but he tried.

“It’s a tragic loss and I am sorry for that loss.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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