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Posted: Jan 10 2008, 07:21 PM
Member No.: 2
Joined: 5-October 07
Youth charged with manslaughter after teen death
A teenager has been charged with manslaughter following an incident in Cotmanhay last Friday.
Police were called to reports of a fight at about 9.30pm and found Jack Knighton, 17, collapsed in the road on Dovedale Circle. He died the next day in hospital from his injuries.
Jack's mum, Jane Knighton, said he had been at someone's house a few doors down with his girlfriend and a couple of friends when an argument allegedly broke out. An alleged fight spilled out onto the street.
Jane, 39, said: "I was fetched by one of Jack's friends and he was lying on the road. I had my coat and pyjamas on and just ran down there.
"He was breathing, but not properly, really heavy like he was gasping for breath. I was on the phone to the paramedic and she said 'put the phone to his mouth I want to know what he is breathing like.' She said 'he's not breathing properly.'"
Five police cars and a police van turned up and officers arrested a 16-year-old and took him to the station.
Jack, who never regained consciousness, was taken to the Derby Royal Infirmary where he was given a brain scan. Jane and her husband, David, were told to go home because there was no more they could do, and Jack was put in intensive care. But they were called back at 4.30am by hospital staff who said Jack had taken a turn for the worse.
Jane said: "When we got there, they said 'we've done another brain scan and he is brain dead.' The doctors came round the next morning at about 8am and said there was nothing they could do for him.
"They did what they call a death test and said there was nothing there. They tried it again an hour later and then said 'I think we will have to turn the machine off.' I was gutted, I couldn't stop crying. We just sat with him. All of his friends came in and his girlfriend was there."
On Sunday a police liaison officer spent three hours at the family's home and officers charged the 16-year-old in connection with the incident. He appeared before South Derbyshire Youth Court in Derby on Monday.
Jane said: "I'm devastated. He was a nice lad, he was loved in the community. There are a lot of people around here that are devastated about what has happened."
Jack leaves brothers Luke, 19, Toby, 15, and Andrew, 20. His parents are now planning to set up a memorial fund. Anybody who would like to contribute can contact them on 8772474 or 07766 230 149.
Detective Inspector Emlyn Richards, who is leading the investigation, said: "Inquiries have revealed that the victim was involved in a fight prior to his collapse and police are keen to trace anybody in the area at the time that witnessed this incident."
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 0845 123 3333 or Crimestoppers, free and anonymously, on 0800 555111.