Boy remanded after tower block killing

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The Independent Online
A 10-year-old boy accused of the manslaughter of a 74-year-old woman, who was struck by a block of concrete that fell from the roof of a tower-block, was remanded in custody for a week when he appeared at a youth court yesterday.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, made a six-minute appearance before the court in Leeds in connection with the death of Edna Condie outside her 43-year-old daughter's home at Grayson Heights in Kirkstall, Leeds, on Tuesday.

The boy was remanded into local authority accommodation until next Thursday. His solicitor, Anne Glen, made no application for bail.

The fair-haired boy spoke only once during the hearing yesterday. He nodded when he was asked to confirm his name, and said "Yes" at the end of the hearing, when the chairman of the bench, David Homewood, asked him if he understood the remand. Ann Darwin, solicitor for the prosecution, made an application for the seven-day remand.

The boy, wearing trainers, jeans, a shirt and a sleeveless wool jerkin, stood throughout the hearing holding his mother's hand.

On the other side of him sat his grandfather and grandmother. Two social workers were also in court.

The public is excluded from youth courts, but more than a dozen media representatives packed the rear of the small courtroom.

The boy was asked to stand with his mother as Mrs Darwin told the magistrates that he faced a charge of manslaughter on Tuesday, 29 August.

Mrs Condie died almost instantly when an 18lb (8kg) piece of concrete struck her on the head as she was entering a side door of the 12-storey flats with her husband, George, 76, and daughter Janet, 43, at lunch-time on Tuesday.

Following the incident, the dead woman's husband was comforted by family and friends after being treated for shock at Leeds General Infirmary.

Two other boys, one aged 10 and one aged 9, were arrested and questioned by police but were released without charge on Wednesday.