Parents of British teen killed in crash involving American diplomat's wife speak out

ABC News 2 months ago

The parents of a British teenager who was killed in a crash involving the wife of an American diplomat are calling on the woman to return to the United Kingdom and "face up to what you've done."

Tim Dunn and Charlotte Charles sat down with ABC News in London on Tuesday for an emotional interview, in which they talked about their late son, Harry Dunn, whom they described as "free spirited" and "full of love."

Harry was riding his motorcycle along a roadway in the village of Croughton, England, on the night of Aug. 27, when a car traveling in the opposite direction hit him head-on. The 19-year-old was taken to a hospital in the nearby city of Oxford, where he died soon after, according to Northamptonshire Police.

Harry's father recalled arriving at the scene of the crash that fateful night and seeing paramedics attend to his son, who was critically injured.

"I managed to speak to him a couple times to try and reassure him. Then they sedated him and went off to hospital," Tim Dunn told ABC News. "It was horrible to see it."

The parents said they were told by police that the driver of the car had admitted guilt at the scene and in a subsequent interview with detectives. ABC News has reached out to police for comment.

"It was pretty obvious what had occurred. Her car was completely on Harry's side of the road," Charlotte Charles told ABC News.

"She was on the wrong side of the road," Tim Dunn added. "It was her fault."

The crash occurred less than a mile down the road from Royal Air Force Croughton, commonly known as RAF Croughton, which is a British military station that houses an intelligence-gathering base operated by the United States Air Force.

PHOTO: A general view of flowers left in remembrance of Harry Dunn on the B4031 near RAF Croughton on Oct. 7, 2019 near Brackley, England.
A general view of flowers left in remembrance of Harry Dunn on the B4031 near RAF Croughton on Oct. 7, 2019 near Brackley, England.

Police said the driver was a 42-year-old American woman who is "being treated as a suspect" in the fatal crash investigation. A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State confirmed she is "the spouse of a U.S. diplomat assigned to the United Kingdom."

Police have not officially named her. However, the British prime minister has identified her as Anne Sacoolas.

Sacoolas fled the United Kingdom after apparently claiming diplomatic immunity, which protects diplomats and their family members from prosecution or lawsuits under the host nation's laws.

Northamptonshire Police superintendent Sarah Johnson said the woman left the country after allegedly telling investigators she had no plans to do so in the near future. Police intended to arrest and formally interview her, and they are "now exploring all opportunities through diplomatic channels to ensure that the investigation continues to progress," according to Johnson.

While speaking to reporters Monday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called Dunn's death a "tragic loss" and said he will personally raise the issue with U.S. President Donald Trump if Sacoolas does not return soon to face the U.K. investigation.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab met with the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom, Woody Johnson, on Tuesday and urged the United States "to reconsider its position and do the right thing by Harry Dunn's family," according to a statement from the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Harry's parents said they were "shocked" to learn that the woman had left.

"It''s hard to understand, for me personally, how anybody could -- even though being an accident -- actually kill somebody, but then up and leave and just walk away from it," Tim Dunn told ABC News.

The matter is making it difficult for the family to find closure and try to move forward.

"We can't begin to grieve," Charlotte Charles told ABC News.

Harry's mother then made a direct appeal to Sacoolas, urging her to return to the United Kingdom.

"Just face up to what you've done," she said. "I can't see how you can move on with your family and your life, without facing the family that you've destroyed."


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