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Pop Idol Star Darius’ Family Speak Out On Autopsy Results

The family of Pop Idol star Darius Campbell have spoken out following his autopsy results.
Credit: Alamy

The family of Pop Idol star Darius have spoken out following his autopsy results.

Darius Campbell Danesh was a Scottish singer, who appeared first appeared on the 2001 show Popstars before appearing on the inaugural season of Pop Idol in 2002 – where he reached the finals.

Following his appearance, he had hits with songs such as ‘Colourblind’ and made a name for himself on the West End by starring in Chicago.

In August last year, it was announced that he sadly passed away aged 41 in his hotel room in Minnesota.

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Campbell’s cause of death was disclosed in his autopsy – which confirmed he died from ‘inhalation of chloroethane’.

Chloroethane – also known as ethyl chloride – is a colourless, flammable gas or it can be a refrigerated liquid.

It became popular as an inhalant street drug in the 1980s – especially in Brazil where it is taken during Carnaval, known locally as ‘lança-perfume’.

Side effects of the drug can result in dizziness, euphoria, confusion, a lack of coordination, hallucinosis, hampered short-term memory, and narcosis – while inhalation of higher doses may be related to severe depression of the central nervous system and can damage the liver and kidneys.

His family has now released a statement following the results, saying that it gave them ‘great sadness to share further information’, as per The Scotsman.

Darius Campbell
Darius Campbell Danesh was found dead in his hotel room in Minnesota last year. Credit: ITV via YouTube

It reads: “The Rochester Police Department have finalised their report following Darius’ death. It gives us great sadness to share further information on the passing of our loving son and brother.

“In the days leading up to his death, Darius had been suffering from severe nerve pain in his neck following car accidents in 2010 and 2021, which was progressively ‘getting worse’.

“He had taken pain medication, marijuana and chloroethane to manage the intensity of the pain prior to his death.”

They recall how the night before Darius passed, he was out for dinner with some close friends – who had reported that he was ‘in a lot of pain, but he was in good spirits’.

The group stayed together until the early hours of the morning and planned to meet up again the next day.

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The statement does add that his friends did mention that he was struggling with his neck in the lead-up to his death and was taking medication – but was looking forward to the rest of his life.

“When Darius did not show up and could not be reached, the hotel staff were asked to check on him,” the statement continues.

“Around 11.50am on 11th August, Darius was found unresponsive in bed by the hotel staff in the apartment where he was staying, having inhaled chloroethane using a bag, which led to respiratory arrest.

“The Rochester Fire and Police Department pronounced Darius deceased shortly after at 12.01pm.”

The autopsy report also disclosed that Campbell’s heart was twice the size it is expected to be.

It is added: “This may have contributed to his respiratory arrest.”

The statement concludes by paying tribute to Darius for his ‘open-hearted warmth, generosity of spirit and the way he touched so many people’s hearts and minds’.

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Written by Rosario Monachino

Rosario is a former content editor at IGV who specialised in film, TV and entertainment news. He has a degree in English and Film from the University of Salford and a masters in Journalism from Liverpool John Moores University.