Dunn spokesman to lodge complaint over ‘distress caused’ in Red Notice saga
The spokesman for the family of Harry Dunn is lodging a formal complaint against a police force after accusing them of "causing enormous distress" to the teenager's parents over their comments on a reported Interpol Red Notice issued for their son's alleged killer.
Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn told the PA news agency they are "livid" with Northamptonshire Police after the force said "at no point" had it informed their spokesman Radd Seiger that the notice had been sent out.
An e-mail sent by the force addressed to Mr Seiger said Anne Sacoolas was "wanted internationally" and "the wanted circulations should be enacted" should she leave the US.
Mrs Charles and Mr Dunn said their lawyers had explained to them that the e-mail meant an Interpol Red Notice was issued for Ms Sacoolas.
PA also understands that Mr Seiger had responded to the original e-mail, telling the force he would be informing the parents that a Red Notice had been issued.
But in a statement issued on Wednesday, the force said: "We wish to make it absolutely clear that, at no point, has Northamptonshire Police informed the family spokesperson for the Dunns, Radd Seiger, that an Interpol Red Notice has been issued in respect of Mrs Anne Sacoolas.
"Given that this remains a live case it would be inappropriate to comment further. However, Northamptonshire Police continues to support the Dunn family at this difficult time."
In its statement, the force did not specify what exact action had been taken in respect of the suspect.
The 19-year-old's parents said the statement was "unprofessional" and "pathetic".
Mr Seiger told PA: "I will be making a formal complaint to Chief Constable Nick Adderley's boss, Chief and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold, this evening."
Mr Dunn was killed when his motorbike crashed into a car outside a US military base in Northamptonshire on August 27 last year.
Ms Sacoolas, 42, the wife of a US intelligence official based at RAF Croughton, claimed diplomatic immunity following the crash and was able to return to her home country.
She was charged with causing death by dangerous driving in December but an extradition request submitted by the Home Office was rejected by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in January – a move the State Department has since described as "final".
Reacting to Northamptonshire Police's statement, Mrs Charles and Mr Dunn said: "Why have they done this?
"The first we learned of this statement was from reading tweets in the media. Radd was busy on other things and it hit us like a bolt of lightning, out of the blue.
"We are both suffering terribly at the moment from stress and anxiety. We panicked and didn't know what to do.
"The damage was done and we are livid, furious at Northamptonshire Police for doing what they did.
"How unprofessional of them and for whoever made them attempt this pathetic correction.
"Our lawyers and Radd have explained to us that the words from Northamptonshire Police mean that a Red Notice was circulated.
"These people are clearly trying to attack Radd and therefore us. He is our friend. He is our neighbour."
Mr Dunn's parents continued: "No one in authority came to help us after Harry died. He was the only one.
"He has devoted his whole life to us and to try to make things safer in the community.
"He tries to engage everyone out there in dialogue to try to resolve disputes. How dare they do this to him and us.
"My son Harry died and the suspect was allowed to flee the country by this pathetic government.
"They all need to do their jobs properly and spare us these unwelcome surprises.
"They could not make our lives more miserable if they tried. We were eventually able to speak to Radd who was able to calm us down and explain things.
"We have now seen his response which has made us feel a little better."
Tweeting about the statement, Mr Seiger said: "Northamptonshire Police have this pm issued the attached statement, which has succeeded in only causing enormous distress to Harry Dunn's parents for which the authorities should be thoroughly ashamed.
"The best that Northamptonshire Police could come up with today was a non-denial denial which says that they did not tell us that a Red Notice had been issued.
"May I please remind all those in authority that there is a grieving family at the heart of this case and any attempt on your part to gaslight or mislead, or to attack me personally in any way, constitutes an attack on them."
A Northamptonshire Police spokesman said they would not be commenting further than the statement already issued.