Boy, 10, Killed By Teacher's Car Outside School As He Chatted On Mobile Phone

A 10-year-old boy was knocked down and killed outside a school by a car being driven by a teacher.

Freddie Perry was chatting on his mobile phone and did not see the car, an inquest was told.

He received a call on his phone and answered it as he ran out between parked cars before being hit by Joanne Napper's Nissan Micra.

A friend told police that Freddie was oblivious to the teacher's car.

She was travelling at 20mph and said there was nothing she could have done to prevent the accident, with parked vehicles blocking her view.

Freddie was taken to John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford on September 10 last year, but died the next day.

After the inquest, Freddie's father, Lea Perry, said the family did not blame Miss Napper for the tragedy.

He said: "We don't feel angry towards the lady. She has got to live with it. We have got to live with it. It is hell."

The inquest in Oxford heard that Freddie was playing with a friend at 5.30pm on a green near the family home in Didcot.

PC Naomi Hames said the friend saw Freddie holding the phone to his ear when he disappeared around the side of a parked vehicle seconds before the collision.

She said: "He was running a bit faster than jogging."

At the same time Miss Napper was travelling down the road, having just left Didcot Girls' School where Freddie's sister, Eloise, 12, had joined just a week earlier.

She said there were a lot of cars parked on the side of the road and described seeing a young boy running into the road out of the corner of her eye.

She said: "I slammed on my brakes as soon as I saw him. It was the only thing I could do to try and avoid him. I didn't see him prior to that due to the parked vehicles."

Recording a verdict of accidental death, Oxfordshire coroner Darren Salter said it was an 'extremely tragic incident'.

Freddie's dad said pupils at Stephen Freeman Community Primary School in Didcot, where Freddie had been in Year 6, had dressed a teddy bear in a uniform and put it in his seat.

He said: "They can't bear for him not to be there."