UPDATE: Man charged in connection with Penge crash as IPCC launches police probe
PUBLISHED: 09:07 02 September 2016 | UPDATED: 12:47 02 September 2016
He will appear at Bromley Magistrates’ Court today
A 23-year-old man has been charged in connection with a crash in Penge that killed a child actor and his aunt, as the Independent Police Complaints Commission launched a probe into the collision.
Joshua Dobby, of no fixed abode, will appear in custody at Bromley Magistrates’ Court today charged with two counts of causing death dangerous driving, one count of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, two counts of causing death by driving whilst unlicensed and uninsured, and two counts of aggravated vehicle taking.
Meanwhile, the IPCC has said it will investigate the actions leading up to and following the accident on Lennard Road that claimed the lives of ten-year-old Makayah McDermott and his 34-year-old aunt Rozanne Cooper
IPCC investigators have captured the on-board video footage and data recorder from the police vehicle and have completed a trawl for CCTV in the immediate area of the crash as well as talking to nearby residents.
Despite the attempts of a passerby to resuscitate them, Makayah and his aunt were pronounced dead at the scene on Wednesday afternoon.
Two 13-year-olds and an eight-year-old girl, all related to the pair, have since been released from hospital.
Two of the girls, named as Niyah and Yahla, Makayah’s older sisters, had been injured after becoming trapped underneath the car.
Makayah, a young actor, last week had an audition for a part in a television series set in the 1950s.
Lisa Pitman of Virtue Taekwon-Do had known him since he was four years old.
Paying tribute to him and his family she said: “We are in shock and gutted, such an incredible child, we have been teaching him since the age of four years.
“This is the most tragic freak accident, the family are beautiful, incredible, caring people. They will be indescribably devastated, just as we are.”
Ms Cooper’s neighbour said she often saw the young mother with her nieces and nephews.
Jackie Francis, from Beckenham, said: “We were neighbourly. She was a really nice girl. We would say hello as she came and went.
“I just couldn’t believe it when I heard.
“She was a typical young mother, always with the children, she was very fond of her children.
“It’s just horrible. They were a close family, undoubtedly close.”
Ms Francis added that Ms Cooper’s daughter was “quite athletic” and would often play outside “doing cartwheels”.
A single red rose and a card addressed to “Rose’s family” lay on Ms Cooper’s doorstep.
The tragic incident occurred shortly after 2pm on Wednesday as police chased a black Ford Focus, which had been reported as stolen, from nearby Birkbeck Road in Beckenham.
Eyewitness Venissa Vassell, 18, heard sirens and a car screeching as she walked from the train station and immediately ran to help.
She said: “I did CPR on this lady. I blew in her mouth. It wasn’t working. Her body was trying to revive.”
Ms Vassell also said that the boy who died was fine one moment, but then “by the time I came back to speak to the little girl to say ‘your brother is alright’ he was passed out.
“You can’t physically do nothing to a body that’s in that condition, you can see bones and flesh - I think he shed more blood than anyone else there.”
Police are appealing for witnesses to the collision.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
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