Police investigate whether Devon crash was deliberate
POLICE IN Devon are trying to establish whether the Polish driver of a car which collided with that of a Cork couple had crashed into them deliberately.
The high-speed collision on Friday which claimed the lives of the couple’s son and their unborn child is being investigated by detectives from both the major crime and serious collision units of Devon and Cornwall Police in the UK, a statement said yesterday.
Elber (36) and Con Twomey (39), from Meelin, north Cork, were in a “critical but stable condition”, a spokeswoman for Plymouth hospital said yesterday.
Their son Oisín (1½) died and doctors could not save Ms Twomey’s unborn child. Mr Twomey underwent emergency surgery.
The driver of the second car, a Polish man in his 20s, had been arrested after the crash on Friday but later died of his injuries.
He appears to have swerved into the path of the Cork couple’s Irish-registered Volkswagen Golf, police said on Friday.
Police would not comment yesterday on reports that they had been alerted about the Polish man’s psychological wellbeing before the collision and that he had been spotted by police moments before it.
The incident was referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission because it was witnessed by a police officer. The commission was still deciding yesterday whether to investigate.
The priest who officiated at the couple’s wedding a few years ago described the alleged information coming out about the circumstances of the crash as “appalling”.
“They seemed to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time. It is traumatic,” Fr Dave Herlihy said. He is to travel to the hospital in Plymouth to offer his support to the family of the couple, who are by their hospital bedsides.
Yesterday he described the pair as “a lovely couple, wrapped up in each other’s lives . . . They took up residence in their new home full of the joys of life – planning and arranging and living and caring for each other,” he said.
Fr Herlihy said they shared the same “bubbly, outgoing” personalities. He said a special Mass to pray for the couple’s recovery last night.
Ms Twomey is a primary school teacher at the Convent of Mercy school in Kanturk. Mr Twomey, meanwhile, is involved in the building trade.
They were travelling to Pembroke to catch the ferry to Rosslare when the crash occurred. They had chosen to bring their car to the UK rather than holiday in the sun because of the pregnancy.