Driver remanded over death of Sophia girl

The driver who is accused of causing the death of eight-year-old Anuradha Dawan was remanded to prison yesterday when he appeared before Acting Chief Magistrate Melissa Robertson charged with causing death by dangerous driving and escaping from lawful custody.

Aubrey Barker

Aubrey Barker, 39, of La Penitence Street, Albouys-town was not required to plead when the charge of causing death by dangerous driving was read to him.  It is alleged that on June 4 he caused the death of Dawan when he drove motor van GHH 9339 on the Sophia Access Road in a manner dangerous to the public.

It is also alleged that on June 4 at Turkeyen, being in lawful custody at Turkeyen Police Station on a charge of dangerous driving, he escaped from lawful custody.  He pleaded not guilty.

Attorney Khemraj Ramjattan represented Barker and said that he was surprised at the escape from lawful custody charge.

He said that his client has had no previous problems with the law.  He said that on the day, Barker was driving along the road when the child ran out from behind a minibus and he collided with her.

He added that his client immediately took the child to the hospital where he was taken into police custody.

Anuradha Dawan

Additionally the attorney said that while at the station Barker was told to leave by one “Ms. Blackman” and upon his return he learnt that Dawan had succumbed to her injuries.

Ramjattan asked for reasonable bail to be granted since his client would attend court to defend himself in the matter.

In response, Police Prosecutor Inspector Stephen Telford said that Barker was charged with escaping from lawful custody because while he was assisting with investigations at the police station, he asked to use the bathroom and was granted permission but he then disappeared.

Telford asked for bail to be denied.  He said that the life of a child was snuffed out by the accused.  He added that Barker should have exercised care and caution when he was driving.  Dawan never regained consciousness and died three days after the accident.

The prosecutor denied the claim by the attorney that Barker took Dawan to the hospital. Additionally, he said that since Barker escaped from custody, it was a clear indication that he might want to flee the jurisdiction before the outcome of the matters.

Barker was then refused bail and the matter put down for June 10 at Vigilance Magistrate’s Court.

Dawan of ‘A’ Field Sophia had clung to life in the ICU at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) for three days before succumbing to her injuries.

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