Who is Edward Welch? Police officer, 34, caused the deaths of 10-year-old child actor and his aunt while chasing joyrider

A Police officer caused the deaths of a child actor and his aunt when the joyrider he was chasing smashed into them, a court heard today.

PC Edward Welch, 34, allegedly pursued Joshua Dobby the wrong way down one-way streets, across junctions, and at speeds of up to 60mph in a 20mph zone.

Who is Edward Welch? Police officer, 34, caused the deaths of 10-year-old child actor and his aunt while chasing joyrider
PC Edward Welch has denied causing death by dangerous driving

During the six-minute chase through Penge, South East London, Dobby mounted the pavement and collided with a bollard in the stolen Ford Focus he was driving.

He then allegedly killed Rozanne Cooper, 34, and her 10-year-old nephew Makayah McDermott.

The Old Bailey was told that a third child, aged 13, was also hit and seriously injured in the horror smash in August 2016.

Dobby was found guilty of two counts of manslaughter by gross negligence and causing serious injury by dangerous driving in February 2017, jurors heard.

Welch
Joshua Dobby was being pursued by police at the time

Welch was pursuing Dobby while accompanied by “relatively inexperienced” officer PC Jack Keher in a marked BMW, it was said.

Jurors were told the cop had activated the lights and siren on the car to get Dobby to stop but he accelerated away.

During the six minute chase, the Met Police officer allegedly reached speeds of 60mph – three times the 20mph speed limit.

Jurors were told he also drove the wrong way down one way streets, ignored no right turn signs and sped across junctions while exceeding 40mph.

Who is Edward Welch? Police officer, 34, caused the deaths of 10-year-old child actor and his aunt while chasing joyrider
Makayah McDermott was killed in the crash

Prosecutor Duncan Atkinson KC said: “The car the defendant pursued had been reported stolen six days earlier.

“It is important to recognise therefore that the offence suspected was one that did not involve a risk, either to life, or to public safety.

“There was no indication before Welch saw the Ford Focus that it was being driven inappropriately or dangerously on that day.”

The court was also told Welch, who had been an officer since 2008, was permitted to break the speed limit given his role as a cop.

However, Mr. Atkinson stated that, according to the guidelines, “Pursuing officers have a responsibility to themselves, their colleagues, and the general public. The suspect is included in this.”

Who is Edward Welch? Police officer, 34, caused the deaths of 10-year-old child actor and his aunt while chasing joyrider
Rozanne Cooper was killed in the horror

Makayah, who had previously appeared in an Asda commercial, had just landed a lead role in a television series when he was killed.

He also appeared in productions at his South London theatre school and in a Wizard of Oz production with his sisters.

Welch, of Chatham, Kent, denies two counts of causing death by dangerous driving, one count of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, and one count of dangerous driving on August 31, 2016.

The trial continues.

source:nsemwokrom.com