Pensioner found in Needham Lakes ‘confused after wife’s’ death,

Needham Lakes where  Kenneth Mallett drowned
Needham Lakes where Kenneth Mallett drowned

A 79-year-old man who became confused following the death of his wife was found dead in a lake on the day of his brother’s funeral.

The body of Kenneth Mallett was seen about 30ft from the shore at Needham Lakes, Needham Market, by a dog walker on the morning of September 27, an inquest at Suffolk Coroners Court heard today.

A police officer waded out to pull Mr Mallett ashore but he was declared dead at the scene.

A post mortem by consultant pathologist Dr Karl Love confirmed Mr Mallett, of Marshmoor Park, Great Bricett, drowned.

In a statement, Mr Mallett’s daughter Dawn said her father had appeared distant, confused and quiet following the death of his wife last May and on the day his body was found was due to attend his brother’s funeral.

Assistant Suffolk Coroner Dr Daniel Sharpstone said police found Mr Mallett’s car at a ‘strange angle’ near the lakes’ car park entrance with the keys in the ignition.

Recording a conclusion that Mr Mallett died as a result of drowning, Dr Sharpstone said: “It is difficult to know why he drove to the lakes at that time. He drove late at night and left the keys in. It may be that he was confused.”