Camelon death crash victim’s brother calls for Sir Stephen House to quit

Lamara Bell died from her injuries last weekend
Lamara Bell died from her injuries last weekend

The brother of M9 car crash victim Lamara Bell has backed a petition demanding that Scotland’s chief constable quit.

Devastated Liam Bell (19) posted a link on Facebook to the petition calling on the head of Police Scotland, Sir Stephen House, to resign over his force’s handling of the tragic accident that also claimed the life of her partner John Yuill.

The scene of the fatal road crash on the M9 near Stirling. Picture: Michael Gillen

The scene of the fatal road crash on the M9 near Stirling. Picture: Michael Gillen

The petition, which has over 650 supporters, also targets Justice Secretary, Falkirk West MSP Michael Matheson, for criticism and urges him to step down.

It states that because of the incident “children have lost their parents, brothers and sisters have lost siblings and parents have lost children.

“This comes after serious failings in policing in Scotland which include: stop and search of children, routine arming of police, 999 calls not responded to, even officers calling for back-up not getting help.

“This is totally unacceptable in the 21st century, and those at the top must accept responsibility and resign with immediate effect.”

Those at the top must accept responsibility and resign with immediate effect

Online petition

Lamara, the 25-year-old mother of daughter Alysha (9) and son Kieran (5), lay badly injured in the wreck of John’s Renault Clio for three days after it came off the M9 southbound carriageway near Bannockburn services on Sunday, July 5.

She lost her fight for life in the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow a week later.

John (28), himself a father of two, is thought to have died instantly in the smash.

As three separate inquiries into the tragedy that claimed their lives continues, anger is growing about the baffling series of events that led to their car finally being found.

Police Scotland issued a statement last Friday asking the media to respect the wishes of both families for privacy and make no attempts to contact them.

But Lamara’s family has used social media to express their “anger and disgust” at Police Scotland.

After she passed away on Sunday, her father Andrew wrote on Facebook: “My beautiful purple haired girl passed away this morning.”

Earlier her grieving brother, Martin, had written: “She has been giving it her all for a week now and the first three days she had no medical care whatsoever.

“It was a miracle she was still alive when she was found on Wednesday.”

He added he wanted the world to see the “pain and hurt” of his family, writing: “I want the police to see how a huge error by a senior officer has absolutely devastated us.”

Police admit initial call not followed up

Police Scotland issued a missing persons alert on July 7 after Lamara and John from Mariner Drive in Camelon failed to return home from a camping holiday to Loch Earn in Perthshire on July 5.

Despite receiving a call on its non-emergency 101 number that morning from a passing motorist who reported a car off the road, it was not until Wednesday, July 8 - and in response to a call from local farmer Robert Finlay that there was a car in his field, that officers were sent to investigate.

That day Assistant Chief Constable Kate Thomson admitted: “For reasons currently being investigated the first report was not followed up at the time. A full investigation is underway to establish the full circumstances of the accident.”