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Pair accused of 1991 murder of teenager found not guilty

Two men accused of murdering an 18-year-old mother in Coventry in 1991 have been found not guilty by a jury.

Nigel Barwell and Thomas O'Reilly were acquitted at Birmingham Crown Court following a trial.

Nicola Payne

Nicola went missing in December 1991 while walking home from her boyfriend's house.

Barwell, 51, punched the air and mouthed: "Thank you very much" towards the jury, while O'Reilly, also 51, stood silently in the dock after hearing the verdict.


Bus driver 'devastated' over crash which killed two

The scene of Saturday's crash is boarded up. Credit: PA

The driver of a double-decker bus which crashed into a Sainsbury's killing two people is "devastated", his family said.

In a statement they expressed their "deepest and most sincere condolences to those involved".

They said of the 77-year-old: "Being a grandfather himself, he is devastated to the core by what has happened. We feel deeply for everyone affected by this terrible tragedy.

"He is a very quiet man, and a caring and devoted person. He has strong ties with the local community and has spent most of his life helping and thinking of others. This is just beyond anyone’s imagination.

"We would only ask that the privacy of the families is respected at this tragic time and the police are given space to complete their investigation."


Coventry bus crash victims named by their families

A message reads: 'To Mum, RIP You did not deserve to die like this' Credit: ITV News

Two people killed in a bus crash in Coventry at the weekend have been named by their families.

Rowan Fitzgerald, 7, of Leamington Spa and Dora Hancox, in her 70s, of Nuneaton, both died when a double decker bus collided with a supermarket.

Rowan’s cousin, an eight-year-old girl, was also injured and she remains in a stable condition in hospital.

The children were travelling with their grandparents on the bus when the accident happened.

Five other people were injured in the crash.

Inspector Paul Bennett, from West Midlands Police, said:

The families of Rowan and Dora have suffered a devastating loss. Like people the length and breadth of Britain, we extend our deepest sympathies to them during this time.

As they struggle to come to terms with their loss, they have chosen at this time not to release any images of their loved ones or to provide any words of tribute.

They have also asked for the media to respect their privacy as they grieve.

– Inspector Paul Bennett, West Mids Police.

The bus driver, a 77-year-old man, has not been arrested but "continues to help investigators", police say.

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Stagecoach: 'Our hearts go out' to bus crash families

The bus slammed into the side of the supermarket on Saturday evening Credit: West Midlands Ambulance Service

Stagecoach has issued a statement saying its "hearts go out" to the families of the victim's of Saturday's bus crash in Coventry.

One of its double decker buses slammed into the side of a Sainsbury's supermarket, killing two people.

The company also said the bus driver, a 77-year-old man, had "many years' experience" and had "passed a mandatory annual medical".

In a statement, the company said:

Our hearts go out to the families of those who have lost their loved ones. Our thoughts also remain with all those affected by this tragic incident.

No driver we employ is allowed behind the wheel of our buses without us being satisfied that they are fully qualified, safe and meet all necessary legal requirements. In this case, our driver has many years' experience and has also passed a mandatory annual medical.

Both our driver and our company are co-operating fully in helping police determine the full circumstances involved.

Police have not yet completed their investigation and it is inappropriate to speculate in advance of their inquiries being concluded.

– Spokesperson, Stagecoach Midlands

Police appeal for bus crash witnesses to come forward

Tributes left at the scene. Credit: PA

Police investigating a bus crash which killed two people in Coventry at the weekend have asked any witnesses who have not yet come forward to contact them.

A seven-year-old boy from Leamington, who was travelling on the double-decker, died at the scene.

His cousin, an eight-year-old girl, was also injured and is now in a stable condition in hospital. Previous reports suggested the boy was eight and the girl was nine.

A woman from Nuneaton, believed to be in her 70s, who was a pedestrian, also died at the scene.

West Midlands Police said they are not naming either of the victims at this stage.

The 77-year-old male bus driver is helping police with their enquiries.

Bus crash victim 'did not deserve to die like this', family says

A message reads: 'To Mum, RIP You did not deserve to die like this' Credit: ITV News

The daughter of a woman killed in a bus crash in Coventry has left a message at the scene of the tragedy reading: "You did not deserve to die like this."

A woman in her seventies was among two people killed when the double-decker bus careered into Sainsbury's in the city centre.

An eight-year-old boy was also killed, while a nine-year-old girl remains in critical condition, police say.

None of the victims have yet been formally identified.

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