Northamptonshire Police chief defends investigation into Harry Dunn's death and explains who knew what and when

The chief constable of Northamptonshire Police defended the investigation into Harry Dunn's death which has gained international attention.

Tuesday, 22nd October 2019, 12:34 pm
Updated Tuesday, 22nd October 2019, 1:34 pm
Harry Dunn

Chief Constable Nick Adderley gave an timeline of the probe including what happened surrounding diplomatic immunity, when Anne Sacoolas left the country and when Harry's family found out.

During what he described as an 'unprecedented' press conference, Ch Cons Adderley also confirmed that investigators will be going to the US to interview the suspect under caution at her request.

“When I look back at how the police have dealt with this so far, I can say that if the circumstances remained the same and the same again happened, we would take the same course of action," he said.

"I would not change the way that police have dealt with this to date.”

Ch Cons Adderley started the press conference by giving a reminder that this is a live investigation and deserves all the protection of the law.

He said Harry's parents Tim Dunn and Charlotte Charles have conducted themselves with dignity and grace in their pursuit of justice, but that their spokesman Radd Seiger should 'exercise restraint in his commentary because it's not helpful'.

The police chief then gave a timeline of the investigation from the fatal crash on August 27, to a meeting on September 26, when officers confirmed to the family that Mrs Sacoolas had left the country.

Northamptonshire Police Chief Constable Nick Adderley at the press conference on the Harry Dunn investigation

Ch Cons Adderley confirmed their request for her diplomatic immunity to be waived had been denied was on September 16, the same time they were told she had gone back to the US.

He said this has 'frustrated' their investigation but has not caused it to 'stall or slow down', as the average time for a file to be submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service on a fatal crash is 16 weeks.

A delay was taken before telling the family to 'understand the legal steps' and to allow for Harry's funeral, he added, a decision he supports.

But Harry's family found out Mrs Sacoolas had left 'through other channels' which the police chief would not divulge but said it was 'unfortunate'.

Northamptonshire Police head of operations department Superintendent Sarah Johnson, who is leading the investigation into Harry Dunn's death

Ch Cons Adderley insisted no 'victim code' had been breached, something Mr Seiger has suggested, and felt no pressure from politicians in their investigation.

Since then, Harry's parents have raised awareness of their plight, including a trip to the US in which they met President Donald Trump in the Oval Office, where they were told Mrs Sacoolas would not be returning to the UK.

They had the chance to meet Mrs Sacoolas, who was waiting in the next room, but declined saying it had to be in Britain.

But Ch Cons Adderley said Mrs Sacoolas' lawyers told police she was willing to be interviewed under caution in the US by Northamptonshire officers, and they will be leaving once their visas are sorted.

"We will do our very best to get justice for Charlotte and Tim whatever that may look like," he ended on.