Heroin overdose inquest hears evidence from Hindley Street doctor’s daughter
A doctor’s daughter has admitted to a coronial inquest she also took heroin the night her friend died from an overdose of the drug at her father’s surgery in Adelaide’s CBD.
- Lucas Pike, 43, injected heroin inside a Hindley Street clinic and could not be revived
- His friend Athena Kyriacou worked at the clinic, which belongs to her father
- Ms Kyriacou has told a coronial inquest she also took the drug the night Mr Pike died
Lucas Pike, 43, could not be revived after collapsing inside the pathology room at Jack Kerry’s clinic on Hindley Street in March 2016.
Dr Kerry’s daughter Athena Kyriacou, 30, said she also took the drug on the night Mr Pike died.
She worked as a phlebotomist taking blood from patients at the clinic and today gave evidence about how the heroin was acquired and administered.
Ms Kyriacou said she and Mr Pike met another friend, Mark Campbell, at the Woolshed Bar on Hindley Street, and alleged Mr Campbell was “pushing” for the pair to take heroin with him.
The group ended up paying $150 for the heroin which Mr Campbell — who has since died — left the bar to collect, the court heard.
Ms Kyriacou said Mr Campbell later injected her and Mr Pike at the nearby clinic, before they collapsed minutes later.
She was today challenged as to whether she told police it had been her idea to take the drugs, which she denied.
“I remember [Mr Pike] was standing holding his arm out, and I just remember Mark turning towards him,” she said.
“As soon as I had it I just felt funny, everything was almost pixelated.”
Paramedics arrived and attempted to resuscitate the pair, but only Ms Kyriacou could be revived.
“I kept saying ‘where’s Lukey, where’s Lukey’ … no-one would tell me,” she said.
“I’d just come out of an overdose and found out my friend had died.”
She was adamant Mr Campbell inserted the needle in her arm, despite counsel assisting the coroner Naomi Kereru pointing out she allegedly told police on the night that she injected herself.
“I don’t remember anything from the hospital, and if they were to ask me questions that’s just a bit dodgy of them,” she said.
‘One’s blue and one’s not’
Inside the Hindley Street surgery where Luke Pike fatally overdosed on heroin. (SA Police Forensic Services)
Ms Kyriacou told the court she was Mr Pike’s best friend and the pair lived together for several months.
She said they each had up to eight drinks on the day Mr Pike died, and she was planning to hand out flyers at a Fringe show later that night.
Ms Kyriacou said she and Mr Pike had not used heroin in about a decade, and so were concerned about the dosage.
“After 15 years or so of not using, you wouldn’t be 100 per cent sure how much to have,” she said.
Yesterday the court was told Dr Kerry, who had been in the next room when the pair overdosed, joined Mr Campbell to perform CPR on the pair.
Dr Kerry can be heard on a triple-zero call, which was played to the court, describing the pair’s condition as “one’s blue and one’s not blue”.
“I was talking to the patients only five minutes ago, and they locked themselves in a room and the next minute I was called out to come and do CPR,” Dr Kerry told the operator.
“One of the witnesses said it was heroin.”
Ms Kyriacou said she had not had a sexual relationship with Mr Campbell, but had kissed him.
After the incident, Mark Campbell was found to have Mr Pike’s phone in his pocket, but SA Police Sergeant Morag Gibson told the court Mr Campbell was “reluctant to admit his involvement”.
Police criticised over lost syringe
Ms Kereru said police failed to properly seize and analyse a syringe containing blood samples and possible traces of heroin from the scene.
Police found the syringe, which was thought to have been lost, the day before the inquest began this week.
Ms Kereru said the syringe was not tested or referenced in the final police report, which could have affected separate criminal drug charges.
Police raided a house in Kurralta Park two hours after the incident, seizing illicit drugs and eventually laying drug-related charges.
Ms Kereru said the failure to find and analyse the syringe meant police could not prove a connection to the heroin which killed Mr Pike.
Senior Constable Kurt Gresch said he could not explain why police misplaced the syringe from the scene, saying it was handled by a different police department.
In separate testimony, Constable Glenn Hausler admitted there was no plan between the multiple police that attended the scene to search for two other missing syringes.
He said he had not searched an outside wheelie bin and other separate bins.
Asked whether having a more thorough plan to search the scene would have benefited the investigation, Mr Hausler said “yes, it would have been a complete investigation”.