Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Mum of 12 Is Killed in Hit and Run

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Mum of 12 Is Killed in Hit and Run

Article excerpt

Byline: June Kelly And Sarah Stack

Horror returned to a Teesside street for a second time after a mum of 12 was mown down and killed by a hit-and-run driver.

Westbury Street in Thornaby was a scene of bloody devastation after a green BMW ploughed into three members of the Cooper family.

Betty Cooper, 86, died after being thrown through the air by the impact.

And today her son Barry and his wife, Trisha, were in hospital after suffering terrible injuries in the incident.

The pair had been holding a party to mark their 30th wedding anniversary and were putting Mrs Cooper in a taxi at about 1am yesterday when the accident happened.

In 1997, in almost the same spot, a young mum lost her leg and her three-year-old daughter was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver.

After that accident, speed bumps were installed and a 20mph limit imposed.

But residents believe the car which hit the Cooper family must have been speeding to cause such terrible injuries.

Mrs Cooper, 86, lived on Castleton Road, Stockton, just a few doors from one of her daughters. Many of her other family also live within minutes of each other in the tight-knit area of Stockton.

Police are looking for a green, three-series BMW.

Mr and Mrs Cooper both suffered serious leg and pelvic injuries. Today Mr Cooper was comfortable in North Tees Hospital and a South Tees NHS spokeswoman said Mrs Cooper was stable.

Yesterday police were carrying out a door-to-door investigation near the scene of the accident. They believe the driver is a local resident, and are appealing for anyone who may recognise the car, or know the driver, to come forward in confidence.

Det Insp Shane Sellers of Stockton CID said: "Obviously this is a terrible, tragic end to a happy family occasion.

"The driver of the car made no attempt to stop, leaving the elderly woman fatally injured and her son and daughter-in-law with serious injuries.

"I want to appeal to anyone who knows the identification of the driver to come forward in confidence."

Mrs Cooper has been a widow since 1956. The rest of her family are said to be devastated. …

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