Hit-and-run victim gave up her own life to save children


Paul Peachey,Rob Hastings
Saturday 28 September 2013 16:59

A man will appear in court today charged with murder and 13 counts of attempted murder after a spate of hit-and-run incidents during half an hour in Cardiff on Friday.

The 31-year-old suspect, who has been remanded in custody and whose name has not been released, was charged last night with the murder of Karina Menzies, 32.

He also faces four charges of assault and dangerous driving, with police alleging that he left his van during the incidents to hit people with a weapon, believed to be a steering-wheel lock.

Detective Superintendent Paul Hurley said: "The investigation is still very much ongoing and we still appeal for anyone with information to contact the incident room at Cardiff Central Police Station."

Ms Menzies had been walking with two of her three children, aged eight and one, when the white van drove straight towards them.

Her brother said yesterday that she had sacrificed her own life to shield her children from the full force of the impact. "She just screamed and threw them out of the way as much as she could," Craig Menzies told Radio 5 Live. "He still clipped them but she took it head on. She saved their lives."

He said the driver then reversed over her body. She was the only person killed from the series of hit-and-run incidents in the city on Friday afternoon over three miles.

A total of 13 people were injured and nine people, including five children, remained in hospital yesterday after the crashes. Two of the adults were critically ill last night. Ms Menzies' eldest daughter, 10, was on a group holiday in Florida at the time and will only be told of her mother's death when she returns home.

Her family have contacted group leaders with her to ensure that she is kept from social media and televisions so she does not learn of her mother's death.

Adam Lewis was walking with his partner, Annie Jones, 23, and their two-year-old daughter Amelia-May in a pram, when the van careered towards them. "I caught the van in my peripheral vision but it was too late: he just sped up and smashed straight into us," he said. He added that Amelia-May, who suffered cuts and bruises, "ended up face-down on the pavement and my partner was there holding onto her leg and it was broken. It's mind boggling. Why somebody would want to do that I will never know".