A TEENAGE ‘risk taker’ fell to his death from the Westgate Centre after taking drugs, an inquest heard.

Nineteen-year-old Max Mian was found dead on the morning of Monday, October 2, a short distance from the entrance to the new John Lewis store.

The ‘extraordinary’ classics student had arrived in Oxford to begin his second year of studies at Brasenose College the day before.

Yesterday at Oxford Coroner's Court, Oxfordshire Coroner Darren Salter delivered a verdict of accidental death.

After arriving in Oxford on October 1 Mr Mian, from Norwich, was seen ‘bouncing around’ with his friends and appeared happy to be back with them.

That night, he and friends went out to The Swan and Castle pub in Castle Street, where he took ketamine, described as his ‘drug of choice’ at that time.

Mr Mian also had MDMA in his system, though the quantity may indicate he had not taken the drug recently.

After the pub, Mr Mian returned to his shared accommodation at Frewin Annex in St Michael’s Street where he played Grand Theft Auto on the PlayStation going to bed in the early hours of October 2.

Oxford Mail:

Mr Mian was spotted on CCTV leaving the flat at 3.25am and heading into the city centre.

The last time he was caught on camera was at 3.37am close to the Westgate Centre, which at that time was in the final weeks of its £440m redevelopment.

It is believed he climbed the John Lewis building from the outside but fell from ‘two thirds’ of the way up. 

It is unclear whether he was climbing up or down at the time.

Mr Salter estimated the time of the fall to be about 4.30am.

His body was discovered by workers shortly before 7am. 

The reason why he climbed the centre remains unclear, but the inquest heard Mr Mian was a ‘risk-taker’ who had scaled buildings in the past. 

He had also expressed a desire to enter the construction site before, telling friends it would be an ‘adventure’. 

Mr Salter said that ‘a degree of intoxication’ may account for his risk-taking behaviour. Ketamine can impair judgement. 

Mr Mian’s parents Shah and Helen, who attended yesterday’s inquest, said: “Max was wonderfully extraordinary in so many ways. We loved him so much.

"He will be forever in our hearts and those of so many.”
Junior common room president at Brasenose, Manish Binukrishnan, said:

“Max quickly established himself among the students as a friend to many, standing out with his humour, friendliness and compassion.”