Criminal investigation launched into Met Police officer after woman struck by vehicle escorting Duchess dies
The Independent Office for Police Conduct is launching a criminal investigation into the death of a woman hit by a Met Police motorcyclist escorting Sophie, Duchess of Edinburgh. Helen Holland, aged 81, sustained serious injuries following the collision in Earl’s Court in London and died in hospital two weeks after the incident.
Ms Holland had been in London visiting her sister at the time of the crash which happened just days after King Charles’ coronation at Buckingham Palace. Her family said she had suffered ‘multiple broken bones and massive internal injuries’ alongside ‘irreversible brain damage’.
IOPC director Amanda Rowe said: “Our thoughts remain with Ms Holland’s family, friends and everyone affected by her death.
“This is a tragic incident and it is important that we carry out a thorough, independent investigation to establish the full circumstances, which will include the actions and decision-making of the officer under investigation.
“We have been in regular contact with Ms Holland’s family and we will keep them updated as our investigation progresses.
“At the end of our investigation, we will decide whether to refer the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service for a charging decision and whether the officer should face disciplinary proceedings.”
Chief superintendent Richard Smith, head of the Royalty and Specialist Protection wing at Met Police, said the “tragic outcome is being felt by colleagues across the Met” and “thoughts are very much with the woman’s family and loved ones at this sad time.”
“Officers know that their actions, both on and off duty, are open to scrutiny and following our referral of the incident, the IOPC launched an independent investigation - we continue to cooperate with and support that enquiry,” he said.
The IOPC previously confirmed it would be using CCTV from nearby properties and police body camera footage to assist its investigation into the crash. Officers who were on the scene would also be interviewed and appealed for other witnesses to come forward.