Family’s four-year quest for justice for Abigail

Abigail Harris, who died after being struck by a hit-and-run driver while on holiday with her family in Gran Canaria.

Abigail Harris, who died after being struck by a hit-and-run driver while on holiday with her family in Gran Canaria.

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The family of a 12-year-old girl killed in a hit-and-run while on holiday in 2010 are still searching for the truth four years on.

Abigail Harris, of Batley, died after a speeding car ploughed into her as she stood on a pavement in Puerto Rico, Gran Canaria, throwing her into the air.

Spanish citizens Ingrid Isabel Noguera Gomez and her father Jaime Noguera were both in the car, although it was not clear who was driving.

The pair both faced charges for dangerous driving in Spain but due to a legal technicality, Spanish authorities have refused to confirm whether anyone was ever prosecuted.

Now, however, West Yorkshire Coroner Oliver Longstaff has ruled Abigail was unlawfully killed, despite being unable to find the outcome of the court case. Summing up, he said: “The conclusion will come as no surprise and no comfort to Abigail’s family, who have had to live with this dreadful event for four years, knowing nothing can bring her back. If there is any consolation to be gained, it was that she was utterly unaware of what was going on – take some comfort in the fact that she did not suffer.”

Abigail’s mother Nicola Thackray said: “I am pleased with the inquest – it was the only verdict they could really have given. The thing that annoys me is that, even though Spain is in the EU, we are still unable to find out what happened in the court case of the people who were driving the car.”

Her father Tony Harris said: “To be honest, it’s been four and a half years, and I don’t think we really want to know. But if this happens to other families, I think it’s important that they can see justice being done.” They said they now want their daughter to be remembered the right way.

Nicola said: “She would always give away what she had – she was so generous and always shared with people.”

Tony added: “She was so nice and outgoing with everybody, she had lots of friends and loved school.”

The family holds a charity bowls tournament every year in Abbi’s memory at Overthorpe Sports Club in Thornhill. Tony said: “One of the things that keeps us going is the messages we still get from her friends. One told me the other day there isn’t a day goes by when they don’t think of her. I don’t think they’ll ever forget – and neither will we.”

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