The 81-Year-Old Woman Hit by British Royal Duchess Sophie’s Security Vehicle Has Died of Her Injuries

windsor, united kingdom may 13 embargoed for publication in uk newspapers until 24 hours after create date and time sophie, duchess of edinburgh attends day 3 of the 2023 royal windsor horse show in home park, windsor castle on may 13, 2023 in windsor, england photo by max mumbyindigogetty images
Woman Hit by Duchess Sophie’s Police Escort DiesMax Mumby/Indigo - Getty Images

The woman who was struck by Sophie, Duchess of Edinburgh’s royal police escort earlier this month has died. Helen Holland, 81, was hit by a police motorcycle escorting Sophie in London on May 10. The collision left Helen with “multiple broken bones and massive internal injuries,” her family told the BBC. She was hospitalized in critical condition and died of her injuries today, police confirmed.

Buckingham Palace said in a statement to the outlet that the Countess of Wessex is “deeply saddened” by the death and sends her “deepest condolences” to Helen's family. She will get in touch with them privately.

Sophie previously released a statement through the palace immediately after the collision; it read: “The Duchess’s heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with the injured lady and her family. She is grateful for the swift response by the emergency services and will keep abreast of developments.”

A similar accident took place in 2019, when a woman, also in her 80s, was hit by a police motorbike in Prince William and Kate Middleton's police escort.

Metropolitan Police Chief Superintendent Richard Smith, the head of royalty and specialist protection, reacted to the latest incident, telling the BBC that the “tragic outcome is being felt by colleagues across the Met” and “thoughts are very much with the woman’s family and loved ones.”

“Officers know that their actions, both on and off duty, are open to scrutiny, and following our referral of the incident, the [Independent Office for Police Conduct] launched an independent investigation—we continue to cooperate with and support that inquiry,” he added.

The police watchdog organization is still investigating the crash.

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