Shoreham airshow crash inquest opens

Posted On 02 Sep 2015 at 11:28 am

The inquest into the deaths of the victims of the Shoreham airshow crash was opened this morning (Wednesday 2 September).

West Sussex coroner Penelope Schofield adjourned the full hearing until June next year – before the anniversary of the crash.

She urged all those investigating the crash which left 11 dead to do everything they could to enable the inquest to take place on schedule.

She promised to be fearless in investigating the cause of the deaths in the opening hearing which lasted less than half an hour.

Detective Chief Inspector Carwyn Hughes, of Sussex Police, read the name, date of birth, address and occupation of each of the men who died.

He also reported the cause of death if each of the 11 based on tests carried out by forensic pathologist Mike Biggs.

The inquest was told that chauffeur Maurice Abrahams, of The Brow, Woodingdean, died of smoke inhalation.

Cyclist Dylan Archer, of Frederick Street, Brighton, died of fragmentation of body due to blunt force trauma.

His friend Richard Smith, of Lansdowne Square, Hove, died of head, neck and chest injuries due to blunt force trauma.

Care manager Tony Brightwell, of Marmion Road, Hove, died of fragmentation of body due to blunt force trauma.

Brighton and Hove Albion groundsman Matt Grimstone, of Osborne Road, Brighton, and fellow Worthing United footballer Jacob Schilt, a delivery driver, of The Close, Brighton, died of head injuries. They were travelling to a match together in a Vauxhall Corsa.

The only name not already released was retired engineer and widower Graham Mallinson, from Newick.

Like Shoreham-born Daniele Polito and Littlehampton labourer Matt Jones, he died of fragmentation of body due to blunt force trauma.

The other two names were motorcyclists Mark Reeves, from Seaford, and Mark Trussler, from Worthing.

A review hearing will take place on 22 March next year, with the full inquests scheduled for June.

The coroner, addressing the few family members present, said: “I do understand that you desperately need answers to all that happened.

“I will do that in a full and fearless fashion within the law.

“I will do everything I can to progress this matter as speedily as possible.”
And she urged all those investigating the crash to help make that possible.

She added that she also acknowledged the pain felt by friends and the wider community.

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