Prosecutors have explained their reasoning for not proceeding with a murder charge for a 13-year-old boy, who has admitted to causing the death of a beloved Sheffield grandmother through dangerous driving.
Marcia Grant, aged 60, died outside her home in the Greenhill area of Sheffield on April 5, 2023.
A 12-year-old boy, who is now aged 13 and cannot be named for legal reasons, was charged with Marcia's murder in the days following her tragic death.
Earlier this year, he entered a not guilty plea to that charge.
But during a Sheffield Crown Court hearing yesterday, (Tuesday, October 3, 2023) the defendant admitted to a newly-added alternative charge of causing death by dangerous driving, which was accepted by prosecutors.
Malcolm Christy, District Crown Prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) Yorkshire & Humberside, has now explained their decision to accept the boy's death by dangerous driving plea, and to not proceed with the charge of murder.
He said: "The death of Marcia Grant was a tragedy. The senseless and dangerous actions of the defendant have left her family and friends devastated.
"Due to the seriousness of the case, an immediate charging decision was required, and the defendant was initially charged with murder under our ‘threshold test’.
"Following further investigations by South Yorkshire Police – including a reconstruction of the scene, expert reports and witness statements – we reviewed our initial decision and concluded there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction for that offence.
"This was in line with our duty to keep all cases under continuous review and to ensure the right person is charged with the right offence.
"...the defendant has pleaded guilty to the offence of causing death by dangerous driving.
"Our thoughts are with Marcia Grant’s family and friends who feel her loss every day."
A CPS spokesperson also said they 'consulted with the police and counsel and explained our decision to the family of Marcia Grant'.
For murder to be proved beyond reasonable doubt, prosecutors are tasked with showing that a defendant intended to cause death or serious injury.
At the conclusion of today's brief hearing, the judge, Mrs Justice May adjourned the sentencing until December 1, 2023 to allow for the preparation of reports.
The defendant is also set to be sentenced for an additional charge of possession of a bladed article during the same hearing.