Rockhampton death: Caffeine from '20 coffees' blamed

CAFFEINE from the equivalent of "20 espresso coffees" contributed to a Queensland prisoner's death in custody, a coroner has found.

Despite a thorough investigation, authorities have no idea how 51-year-old prisoner John Michael Spence was able to ingest the caffeine unnoticed and found no evidence of the drug in his cell.

Mr Spence was being held at the Capricornia Correctional Centre near Rockhampton when he died suddenly on September 4, 2013.

A specialist pathologist found a reasonably cause of death was cardiovascular disease and seizures while his caffeine levels were extremely high.

Another doctor said she believed the caffeine levels, at about 80mg/kg, could not have come from coffee alone.

More on this at

Topics:  editors picks rockhampton

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Court threats as controversial CBD development denied

Whitsunday Funerals and Crematorium's new premises on the corner of Shakespeare and Juliet Streets in Mackay..

Funeral owner to take the council to court over crematorium

Airshow to be part of runway dinner

DONE DEAL: Paul Bennett and airport owner Ross Armstrong shake hands over the new airshow deal for next year.

Airshow to be part of runway dinner.

Local young-gun aims high after meeting heroes

INSPIRING TALENT: Jack Miller, Harry Maxwell, Max Whale and Kayden Downing in Proserpine last weekend.

Local Aussie Champ has sights set high ahead of Brisbane Cup

Local Partners