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Hull: Homeless man dies after ‘couldn’t get a flat with a dog’

An inquest has opened up the tragic death of a well-known homeless man from Hull, who was regularly spotted around the city with his beloved dog by his side. Johnathan Ellerington, 41, was a town center regular and known for having his trusty companion - Jack Russell Teddy - by his side. Sadly, Jon was found dead on the pavement outside Costa Coffee on Ferensway with his pet by his side on December 18th last year. Just days before he was found dead, a desperate attempt was made to find shelter for Jon after a passer-by was concerned about his plight in the cold temperatures. An inquest into Jon's death opened in Hull Coroner's Court on Tuesday. A brief hearing revealed Jon's cause of death as heroin poisoning. Hull Live previously reported how worried Sophia Jama was trying to ensure Jon had somewhere to stay after he told her he had been sleeping outside near the Anlaby Road flyover. But after contacting Hull City Council and homeless charity Emmaus, she said she had been told there was no accommodation available because Jon was dating Teddy.

Johnathan Ellerington, 41, was regularly spotted walking his dog by his side around town (Image: Hull Live/MEN Media)

A homeless man who was allegedly denied accommodation after refusing to part with his dog was found dead on the sidewalk outside a Costa Coffee shop, an inquest has found.

Johnathan Ellerington’s beloved Jack Russell Teddy was by his side when his body was found at Ferensway in Hull.

The raw sleeper’s cause of death was heroin poisoning, it was revealed at a brief hearing in Hull Coroner’s Court on Tuesday.

Jon was honored by friends, family and the public after he died in freezing temperatures on December 18 last year.

Just a week before his death, a concerned woman called to make sure he had a warm place to stay.

Sophia Jama claimed she had been told there was no accommodation available because Jon was with Teddy when she contacted Hull City Council and Emmaus homeless charity.

But Hull City Council has since said supplies are available for homeless people with pets, while Emmaus also issued a statement saying staff believed Jon had access to housing before the tragedy.

Sophia said she stopped to speak to Jon after seeing him with Teddy on Friday December 10.

“I was raised to chat up bad sleepers and treat them like people,” she told Hull Live.

“He had this little dog, like a Jack Russell. He had a bad leg and was freezing, but he told me he couldn’t go anywhere because of his dog.

An inquest has opened up the tragic death of a well-known homeless man from Hull, who was regularly spotted around the city with his beloved dog by his side. Johnathan Ellerington, 41, was a town center regular and known for having his trusty companion - Jack Russell Teddy - by his side. Sadly, Jon was found dead on the pavement outside Costa Coffee on Ferensway with his pet by his side on December 18th last year. Just days before he was found dead, a desperate attempt was made to find shelter for Jon after a passer-by was concerned about his plight in the cold temperatures. An inquest into Jon's death opened in Hull Coroner's Court on Tuesday. A brief hearing revealed Jon's cause of death as heroin poisoning. Hull Live previously reported how worried Sophia Jama was trying to ensure Jon had somewhere to stay after he told her he had been sleeping outside near the Anlaby Road flyover. But after contacting Hull City Council and homeless charity Emmaus, she said she had been told there was no accommodation available because Jon was dating Teddy.

His cause of death was heroin poisoning, an inquest heard (Image: Hull Live/MEN Media)

“I didn’t think that was right so I called the council emergency number but they confirmed they couldn’t find him anywhere because of his pet.”

She continued: “A man from Hull BID told me they knew the guy but didn’t know he was back in bed.

“He said he would try to help the man whilst I also contacted Emmaus who said they were also trying to find accommodation for him.

“Emmaus said they knew the man who was already on a waiting list for housing. You are an amazing organization that goes out year round under any condition to help the homeless.’

It is believed that Jon was a former Hull College student who had worked at Wren Kitchens.

Teddy has since been taken in by members of his family. A fundraiser to help pay for the funeral raised £1,670.

A spokeswoman for the council said: “We are sorry to hear of Jon’s death and send our condolences to his family.

“We encourage people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness to contact us early as we have a number of options available including catering for people with pets. However, whether people use or accept our services is a personal choice.’

A spokesman for Emmaus Homeless Aid has claimed that his own investigation found that Jon had not slept badly.

“Emmaus has provided an outreach service to Hull and East Riding Boroughs for the past five years,” they said.

“We are conducting investigations in both Hull and East Riding and we have not found this person to be sleeping in the street.

“We are working hard to support everyone off the street and would encourage anyone with information about people sleeping in bed to contact us on 0800 066 2169 or download our app.”

The inquiry has now been adjourned with a full hearing to be held at a later, currently unconfirmed date.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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https://metro.co.uk/2022/06/08/hull-homeless-man-died-after-he-couldnt-get-housing-with-dog-16793384/ Hull: Homeless man dies after 'couldn't get a flat with a dog'

Justin Scacco

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