POLICE launched a murder-style investigation after finding a man’s bruised body in the street only to later discover he had died as a tragic result of alcoholism.

When Michal Jarzynka’s body was found in a Chester-le-Street alley in November, with obvious signs of a head injury and other bruises, officers treated his death as suspicious and the scene was examined for evidence.

However, after gathering inital information the operation was scaled down.

A postmortem revealed he died of head injuries, alcohol intoxication and hypothermia.

DC Alex Sims, of Durham Police, told an inquest in Crook yesterday: “He was found in a public street with a number of injuries, that is why we initially dealt with it as a suspicious death.”

He said a man matching the father-of-one’s description was captured on CCTV leaving a Wetherspoons pub on Front Street, at about 12.15am.

“The man can be seen staggering down the street,” he added. “He certainly doesn’t walk in a straight line.”

Officers also spoke to Mr Jarzynka’s support worker who told them he’d had alcohol problems before and in the days leading up to his death, he had suffered bruises and a graze to the head in a fall.

County Durham and Darlington Coroner Andrew Tweddle said: “The cause of death is one relating to head injuries, alcohol and hypothermia but the underlying problem that has led immediately to his death is alcohol. That is the very basic problem that he had and was struggling with by all accounts.”

Mr Tweddle recorded a conclusion it was probably an alcohol related death.