A CORONER has said it could take weeks to establish how a couple came to be discovered dead in their Washington home.
Sunderland Coroner Derek Winter opened the inquest into the deaths of Ken and Edna Fisher yesterday, and adjourned it for six weeks for a formal cause of death to be given.
The bodies of the elderly pair were found by a carer inside their Biddick Villas bungalow in Columbia, last Friday.
Detective Inspector Andrew Fairlamb, of Northumbria Police’s homicide and major investigations team, confirmed that the bodies of the couple were found at their home address on April 11.
Giving evidence from the witness box, he added that formal identification of the bodies had taken place.
The couple’s full names were given as Kenneth Fisher and Edna Bond Fisher, aged 76 and 74, respectively.
The inquest, at Sunderland Civic Centre, heard that a post-mortem examination, carried out by Home Office forensic pathologist Dr Mark Egan, revealed no formal cause of death.
“It is anticipated, in the coming weeks, that a cause of death can be formally announced,” Mr Winter said.
“Police inquiries are continuing, but no other persons are being sought.”
He added: “I am satisfied, that as part of the investigation, it will be necessary for me to carry out a full inquiry and inquest. My intention is to adjourn today’s proceedings until May 28 at 10am.”
Neighbours in the quiet street reacted in shock after the grim discovery was made last week. One neighbour, who did not wish to be named, told the Echo that Edna suffered from Parkinson’s disease and that her husband was her carer.
Another said the couple had lived there for “well over 30 years” and that Mrs Fisher, who is said to have worked as a nurse in a family planning clinic, would wave when he and his wife saw her in the street. “They were a nice couple, a lovely couple,” he added.
Ken Fisher had spoken to the Echo at the opening of a Saturday GP’s surgery at Oxclose Community School in November 2007. At the time, he said he struggled to make it into the surgery during the week due to caring for Edna.
“It is difficult to get a carer for my wife during the week because my daughter Janet is at work,” he said. “On a Saturday she can help, which is what she has done this morning.”