The wife of a US diplomat has claimed diplomatic immunity to leave the UK after she became a suspect in a police investigation into a fatal car crash.

Harry Dunn, 19, died after his motorbike collided with a car near RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire on 27 August.

Northamptonshire Police confirmed a 42-year-old American woman being treated as a suspect in their investigation had left the country.

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Superintendent Sarah Johnson said: “Northamptonshire Police followed all of its usual procedures following the incident, including liaising closely with the suspect, who engaged fully with us at the time and had previously confirmed to us that she had no plans to leave the country in the near future.

“Due process was also followed in seeking the necessary documentation to allow for the arrest and formal interview of the suspect, and the force is now exploring all opportunities through diplomatic channels to ensure that the investigation continues to progress.”

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UK news in pictures

Shape Created with Sketch.
UK news in pictures

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2/50 3 October 2019

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8/50 27 September 2019

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22/50 13 September 2019

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24/50 11 September 2019

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon cuts the hair of David Torrance MSP raising £1000 for the charity Maggie’s Centre in Kirkcaldy at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh

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33/50 2 September 2019

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One of the iconic ‘Girl with Balloon’ artworks by anonymous street artist Banksy is carried near one of the original locations the artwork appeared at on the Southbank in London

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38/50 28 August 2019

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39/50 27 August 2019

Nat Lofthouse statue is covered in flags at the University of Bolton Stadium, Bolton

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Performers take part in Notting Hill Carnival. Nearly one million people were expected to attend Sunday and Monday’s carnival to celebrate Caribbean culture

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42/50 24 August 2019

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46/50 20 August 2019

Police officers gather to pay their respects at the scene near Ufton Lane, where Thames Valley Police officer PC Andrew Harper, 28, died on Thursday. Jed Foster, 20, has appeared at Reading Magristrates’ Court where denied any involvement with the murder

47/50 19 August 2019

A fire that broke out at the site of Village Bakery on Coed Aben Road, Wrexham Industrial Estate in Wales

48/50 18 August 2019

England fielders crowd Pat Cummins as he see’s out the final over during day five of the second Ashes Test match against Australia at Lord’s Cricket Ground. The test ended in a draw

49/50 17 August 2019

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50/50 16 August 2019

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Speaking to Sky News, Mr Dunn’s mother, Charlotte Charles, said: “Everyone loved him, we’re utterly broken inside and out, everything hurts day and night, it’s an effort to do anything, I ache from it, every limb, every internal organ hurts.”

She added: “We don’t know how we can start to grieve for him.

“We have nothing. No justice. We have nothing to put our minds at rest that she’s even remorseful.”

Superintendent Johnson added: “We are also working closely with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in an effort to come to a resolution regarding this matter.

“Harry Dunn’s family deserve justice and in order to achieve this, a full and thorough investigation, with the assistance of all parties involved, needs to take place.

“Northamptonshire Police is committed to ensuring justice for Harry and specially trained officers continue to support the Dunn family in their loss, including keeping them fully informed of all developments in the investigation.”

In a statement, Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, said: “I wish to offer my condolences to the family affected by this tragic incident.

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“I have called the US ambassador to express the UK’s disappointment with their decision, and to urge the embassy to reconsider it.”

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

In its own statement to Sky News, the US embassy in London offered its “deepest sympathies” to Mr Dunn’s family following the accident “involving a vehicle driven by the spouse of a US diplomat assigned to the United Kingdom”.

It added: “Embassy officials are in close contact with the appropriate British officials on this matter.

“Due to security and privacy considerations, we cannot confirm the identity of the individuals involved, but we can confirm the family has left the UK.”