Crisis In The Family Courts

Dad faces murder rap after River Avon car plunge girl Gabrielle Grady dies

Posted in domestic law by abatteredmother on February 15, 2010

By Rebecca Evans 15/02/2010

A girl of five left critical when her father plunged his car into a river lost her fight for life yesterday.

Gabrielle Grady’s brother Ryan, six, and dad Christopher escaped the submerged vehicle but she was trapped for two hours.

Police divers finally freed her but she died in hospital yesterday, three days after the horror.

Close relatives were at her bedside as she passed away.

Ryan was initially also critically ill when he was airlifted to Birmingham’s Children’s Hospital with his sister following Thursday’s rescue. But the lad was said to be "recovering quite well" yesterday.

On Saturday, their dad, 41, was remanded in custody by Worcester magistrates charged with attempting to murder the youngsters.

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Detectives say the death means the tragedy is now a murder probe. Grady, of no fixed address, is due at Worcester crown court on Thursday. He drove his Vauxhall Vectra across a field into the River Avon in Evesham, Worcs, on Thursday morning.

The children’s mum Kim Wise, from whom he is separated, lives nearby. Bystander Martin Waites, 56, said: "I could hear a screech of brakes and then saw the car driving fast through a field. The car hit the water with an almighty bang and floated for a few seconds. Then I saw two children in the back seat screaming and banging on the window, trying to get out."

Grady and Ryan were out of the car when paramedics arrived. But Gabrielle, known as Gabby, was still inside. West Mercia police said they could not rescue her because of the risk to their men and had to call divers from neighbouring Avon & Somerset. They took 97 minutes to arrive and a further 12 to free her.

Det Supt Stephen Cullen, leading the probe, said of her death: "We are very sad to hear this terrible news. All our thoughts are with Gabby’s family at this difficult time."

A police spokesman confirmed: "Gabrielle passed away peacefully at around 1.30pm."

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