‘Pop Idol’ Darius Campbell Danesh died from accidental inhalation of chloroethane

Former Pop Idol contestant Darius Campbell Danesh died from accidental inhalation of chloroethane, according to a medical examiner.

The Scottish singer was found dead in his apartment in Rochester, Minnesota last month (August 11). He was 41 years old.

An autopsy was carried out by the Southern Minnesota regional medical examiner’s office, which found “toxic effects of chloroethane” and “suffocation” contributed to Danesh’s death. Chloroethane – also commonly known as ethyl chloride – is often used as a topical anaesthetic in hospitals and in dentistry.

Danesh’s family said in a statement that he had been suffering from chronic pain, which stemmed from a car accident in 2010 that left him with a broken neck.

Darius Campbell Danesh
Darius Campbell Danesh in 2016 CREDIT: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

“The results of medical examinations have confirmed that Darius’s death was an accident caused by chloroethane, which is used to treat pain and that tragically lead to respiratory arrest,” they said in a statement. “Darius was suffering from chronic neck pain following a car accident in 2010.

“We would like to thank everyone for their love and kindness, and ask that the family’s privacy is maintained during this difficult time.”

When Danesh’s death was announced in August, his family said the police had confirmed there were “no signs of intent or suspicious circumstances”. The medical examiner also ruled that his death was an accident.

The singer found fame when he appeared on the talent TV show Popstars in 2001. Although he did not make it into Hear’Say – the group formed by the winners of the series – Danesh was a popular contestant on the show and went on to appear in the first series of Pop Idol, in which he finished third.

After his success on Pop Idol, the singer released his debut single ‘Colourblind’ in July 2002 and scored a Number One on the Official UK Singles Chart. His debut album ‘Dive In’ – on which he co-wrote each of the 12 tracks – followed, entering the Top 10 of the Official UK Albums Chart. He went on to score five Top 10 singles in the UK, a gold-certified album in 2004’s ‘Live Twice’ and a successful theatre career.