Driver who killed young actor and aunt acknowledges 'pain and suffering' caused


A man has admitted causing the deaths of a child actor and his aunt following a police chase and acknowledged the "utterly incomprehensible pain and suffering" he caused to their family.

Joshua Dobby, 23, of no fixed abode, ploughed a black Ford Focus he was driving into Makayah McDermott, 10, and Rosie Cooper, 34, as they walked along Lennard Road in Penge, south London, on the afternoon of August 31.

He was initially charged with causing their deaths by dangerous driving but during a hearing at the Old Bailey it emerged he was now charged with manslaughter.

Dobby appeared in court via video link from High Down prison in Surrey and spoke to confirm his name and enter pleas to a new indictment.

He pleaded not guilty to the two manslaughter charges but guilty to causing death by dangerous driving.

He also pleaded guilty to causing serious injury to Makayah's sister by dangerous driving.

He was not asked to enter a plea to a fourth charge of dangerous driving relating to an incident on August 26 on the A228 near Snodland in Kent.

Defending, Robin Ghosh said: "He wishes it to be noted that he fully acknowledges the utterly incomprehensible pain and suffering caused to the families involved."

Prosecutor Jonathan Polnay indicated that the guilty pleas were not acceptable to the Crown and he will face trial on February 27.

Members of the victims' families sat in the well of the court to watch the short hearing before Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC.

Dobby was remanded in custody to next appear at the Old Bailey on February 10 for a pre-trial hearing.