Harley Watson death: Man admits killing ‘lovely, kind’ boy, 12, in hit-and-run outside Essex school

Barney Davis
·2-min read
Harley Watson was killed in the car crash outside his school (EssexPoliceUK)
Harley Watson was killed in the car crash outside his school (EssexPoliceUK)

A man has admitted killing a 12-year-old boy in hit-and-run car crash outside his school in Essex.

Harley Watson died at Whipps Cross University Hospital in east London after a vehicle ploughed into children who were leaving Debden Park High School in Loughton on December 2 last year.

Terence Glover, 52, previously of Newmans Lane, Loughton, pleaded guilty to manslaughter by diminished responsibility when he appeared by videolink at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Monday.

He also admitted the attempted murder of 23-year-old Raquel Jimeno and six boys and three girls aged between 12 and 16, who cannot be named due to a court order.

But he pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder, which prosecutor Christine Agnew said the Crown accepted and will deal with when the defendant returns for sentencing.

Glover, who is being held at a mental health facility, also admitted driving a Ford Ka dangerously in Willingale Road, Loughton.

Miss Agnew said the defendant had “suffered an abnormality of the mind” at the time of the incident.

“That decision has been explained at length to the parents of Harley Watson,” she said.

Harley Watson was killed in the car crash outside his schoolEssexPoliceUK
Harley Watson was killed in the car crash outside his schoolEssexPoliceUK

Harley’s mother, who attended court with her partner, sat in the public gallery and wept as Glover gave his pleas to the charges.

Miss Agnew said the parents of the other victims and a member of staff from the school were listening to the hearing from another courtroom.

In the short hearing which lasted around 15 minutes, Miss Agnew said two psychiatrists will give evidence to the court at sentencing on January 8.

An inquest opening at Essex Coroner’s Court in Chelmsford in December last year recorded Harley’s provisional medical cause of death as a severe head injury.

The inquest heard Harley died in hospital just over an hour after he was hit by Glover’s car at around 3.20pm after school ended on the Monday afternoon.

“He was immediately conveyed to Whipps Cross Hospital where his death was confirmed at 4.43pm,” Essex coroner’s officer Lynsey Chaffe said.

Harley’s family had previously spoken of their devastation after losing their “good, kind, helpful and lovely boy”.

Thousands of well-wishers donated to a GoFundMe fundraising page which was set up to help Harley’s family cover funeral costs. It raised more than £61,000.

In a short statement released through Essex Police, Harley’s family said: “We are so devastated by what has happened.

“Harley was a good, kind, helpful and lovely boy.

“We would like to thank everyone for their kind wishes and concern.”

Reporting by PA