Prom schoolgirl killed as she crossed road near Trimstone

The inquest was held at County Hall in Exeter

The inquest was held at County Hall in Exeter - Credit: Archant

A teenage schoolgirl was killed as she was heading to a party after a school prom disco, an inquest heard last week. 

Audrey Fillon was wearing 'stupid' high heel shoes and carrying a heavy bag containing alcohol as she ran across a dark main road. 

Audrey, 16, suffered fatal head wounds when a Nissan 4x4 pickup truck struck her as she ran across the A361 road at Trimstone, North Devon, at 1am one night in June 2019. 

The Nissan narrowly missed two of Audrey's 16-year-old girlfriends who were crossing the road to go to the party. 

An inquest at the Coroner's Court at Exeter's County Hall heard that the girls had been to their end of GCSE school prom that night. 

The two girls who were with Audrey - who cannot be named for legal reasons - gave statements to police. 

One said the school prom had been 'better than expected' and they had a 'good time' and were going to a friend's house party and were staying in a caravan there for the night. 

Most Read

She said they were 'excited' and joked that they only had to 'cross the road' after getting off the double decker bus. 

"We just had to cross the road, we were really happy," she said. 

French born Audrey was behind one girl and was carrying the heavy bag of alcohol as they sprinted across the main road from behind the bus. 

She said: "Audrey was behind me. She had the bag of alcohol which was really heavy." 

She said she had her high heels on because she had forgotten her other shoes and was 'wearing those stupid high heels'. 

The third girl did not run out but St Tropez born Audrey, from Braunton, North Devon, was knocked down and thrown 10 to 20 feet down the road. 

The other girl said Audrey was 'flung across the road' and 'her legs were all mangled'.  

She called 999 and gave her friend CPR in the road for ten minutes before paramedics arrived. 

She said Audrey was carrying the bag of alcohol and had been wearing a long grey dress and small grey heeled shoes because 'she forgot to bring her other shoes'. 

The Nissan driver, Thomas Lemay-Smith said he was driving at around 60mph along the dark road. 

He saw the bus’s lights and then said: "I saw a movement a few metres in front of me. I braked hard. I saw a young girl with blonde hair in front of me. 

"I heard a loud thud. I had hit another girl and knocked her down the road. A third girl was to the right and I narrowly missed her. The first girl got across the road, the second was right in front of me and I was unable to avoid her. I had split second to react as quickly as I could." 

Forensic collision investigator PC Philip Rowan-Smith said she probably suffered her fatal head wound when she struck the road. 

He said the Nissan Minara had no vehicle defects and was doing around 41mph as it braked as it hit Audrey and agreed with the coroner that the collision was 'unavoidable'. 

A post mortem said Audrey died from head injuries and toxicology tests showed no alcohol or drugs in her system. 

Senior Devon coroner Philip Spinney recorded a road traffic collision conclusion. 

He said the collision was unavoidable and it was a 'tragic accident'. 

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter