Drugs dealer was shot dead outside his home

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A DRUG dealer who was the victim of a gangland style shooting at his Haydock home, was unlawfully killed, an inquest heard last Tuesday.

Danny Regan, 27, was shot three times in his house on Cooper Lane on Thursday, December 12, 2002. Despite exhaustive police enquiries into the killing, the offender has never been detected.

St Helens Coroner, Christopher Sumner, said: "I make no comment on the way Mr Regan chose to live, nobody had the right to terminate his life."

He added: "It is regrettable that the police were not assisted in their enquiries – no doubt threats have been made to those persons interviewed."

Originally from Leeds, Mr Regan moved to Haydock in 1999, after he was shot in his home city.

Lyn Roberts, Coroner's Officer, said: "The father of two was heavily involved in the distribution of drugs in Leeds and it is understood that he experienced some problems before he moved away."

The Coroner heard that the offender of this shooting was not traced and Mr Regan did not help much with investigations.

Lyn Roberts added: "Mr Regan was trying to distance himself from these criminal activities when he moved to Haydock."

Mr Regan was gunned down in his home at around 7pm on Thursday, December 12. He had been hit in the chest, lower back and shoulder. Ballistics experts say five bullets were fired from a pump-action and semi-automatic shotgun.

The offender escaped in a grey Rover car, which had been stolen in Manchester on December 11. It was later found burnt out close to Cooper Lane.

It was at first thought that Mr Regan's body was discovered – slumped at the top of the stairs – by his friend and cousin, on December 15, 2002. But police investigations found that the person who first found the body was wanted by police in Leeds and he did not report what he had seen.

Since the killing, four people have been arrested – including Mr Regan's cousin and friend – but police will be taking no further action against them.

Lyn Roberts said: "All lines of enquiry were exhausted and nothing more could have been done to detect the offender."

Mr Regan came from a large family who were said to be devastated by the fatal shooting.

The cause of Mr Regan's death was multiple gunshot wounds and St Helens Coroner, Mr Sumner, recorded a verdict of unlawful killing.