A 13-year-old boy who said “looks like I got my first kill” after he ran over a grandmother in her own car has admitted causing death by dangerous driving.
Marcia Grant, 60, suffered catastrophic injuries outside her home in the Greenhill area of Sheffield as she tried to stop the boy taking her vehicle.
The youngster, who was 12 at the time of the incident and cannot be named, appeared at Sheffield Crown Court by videolink on Tuesday where none of the details of the incident on April 5 was outlined.
But a previous hearing was told that the boy said “Is she dead?”, “Looks like I got my first kill?”, and “It was an accident, I swear” – according to police called to the scene.
That hearing at Sheffield Youth Court also heard how Mrs Grant’s husband frantically tried to break the windows of the car in an attempt to stop the boy as his wife was trapped beneath the vehicle.
The incident on Mrs Grant’s driveway was outlined in the youth court in April by prosecutor Gary Crothers who said: “At around 7pm on the evening in question this defendant is seen on CCTV attempting to take Mrs Grant’s car.
“Mrs Grant tries to stop him by going behind the car.
“On CCTV, the vehicle is driven slightly erratically at this time and it does come to a stop.
“Mrs Grant positions herself behind the vehicle. The vehicle reverses, causing her to fall on her back and her head impacts with the ground.
“She was trapped under the vehicle, her husband tried to break the window of the car to get the defendant out of the car.”
The prosecutor said the vehicle then reversed “at some speed causing the catastrophic injuries to Mrs Grant”.
He said she was pronounced dead at the scene on Hemper Lane, Greenhill, just after 7.30pm by attending paramedics.
Police called to the scene found the boy had a silver kitchen knife with him.
The boy was due to go on trial on Monday charged with murdering Mrs Grant but, on Tuesday, he pleaded guilty to causing Mrs Grant’s death by dangerous driving and this was accepted by prosecutors during a 20-minute hearing.
The judge, Mrs Justice May, remanded him into youth detention and said he will be sentenced on December 1.
The boy, who had already admitted a second charge of possession of bladed article, appeared by videolink wearing a white shirt with a black tie.
The judge and most of the barristers in the case also appeared via screens.
The boy appeared sitting at a desk in a small room with one woman accompanying him.
He said “yes” to questions from the judge and raised his arm when she asked him to make it clear he could hear what she was saying to him.
The comments made by the boy after the incident were mentioned briefly in previous hearings.
When the youngster first appeared at crown court in April, Ben Campbell, defending, said there was an issue over “what you can infer from them in all the circumstances”.
The district crown prosecutor for Yorkshire and Humberside, Malcolm Christy, said: “The death of Marcia Grant was a tragedy.
“The senseless and dangerous actions of the defendant have left her family and friends devastated.”
Mr Christy explained that the defendant was initially charged with murder using the Crown Prosecution Service’s “threshold test” but, following further investigations including a reconstruction of the scene, it was concluded that “there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction for that offence”.
Speaking outside court on Tuesday, Detective Chief Inspector Andrea Bowell, from South Yorkshire Police, said: “Since Marcia’s death my thoughts have been with her family and friends.
“They have lost a loved one under the most tragic of circumstances and will have to live with the heartbreaking consequences of the events of that evening for the rest of their lives.
“We continue to support her loved ones, and they wish for their privacy to continue to be respected.”
Mrs Grant’s family released a statement after her death which said: “Marcia was a warm, loving and dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend and a pillar of her community.
“Her loss has already sent shockwaves through all who knew her or was lucky enough to be included in her orbit.”
At the time, Rotherham Council said she was one of their “much loved” foster carers.
Council leader Chris Read said: “Marcia was a kind, generous lady who was well-known, much-loved and highly respected within the fostering community.
“Not only did Marcia provide endless love and care to vulnerable children when they needed it the most, but shared her time and considerable experience to nurture and support fellow foster carers.”