A chef died after being hit with a ladle during a fight with one of his colleagues, an inquest was told.
Xiu Bin Wang, 33, was found in his room above the China Chef takeaway after suffering a fatal head injury cause by a forceful blow.
Police launched a murder inquiry and initially detailed fellow chef Zhu Long Guo after he indicated that he struck Mr Wang with a ladle during a row the night before.
But police have been unable to establish exactly how – or when – Mr Wang received the injury which killed him, the inquest was told.
Senior coroner Grahame Short said he had no alternative but to record an open conclusion.
Mr Wang was found dead at lunchtime on August 20 last year at the premises in Brockenhurst, Hampshire.
About 12 hours earlier he had been involved in a violent altercation with Mr Guo following a argument over privacy issues relating to social media.
Det Con Brad Wanless told the inquest that Mr Guo, who does not speak English, was arrested at the scene.
He added: He was taken to the kitchen and appeared to indicate that he had struck the deceased on the head with a ladle.
A ladle was seized and there was a thorough investigation.
All the evidence was collated and presented to the Crown Prosecution Service. They provided advice and as a result no further action was taken in respect of Mr Guo.
Mr Guo has raised the issue of self defence.
Det Con Wanless confirmed that Mr Wang could have suffered an injury before or after the fight, adding: It might have been caused accidentally.