independent

Saturday 19 April 2014

Rail guard jailed for five years over death of 'wonderful' teen

A rail guard was jailed for five years for causing the death of a "wonderful" teenager by signalling a train to move while she was leaning against it.

Georgia Varley (16), a former pupil of Loreto secondary school in Bray, Co Wicklow, was three times over the legal drink driving limit when she lost her balance and fell to her death between the train and platform at Liverpool's James Street station on October 22, 2011.

Rail guard Christopher McGee (45), of Edenhurst Avenue, Wallasey, was sentenced to five years in jail at Liverpool Crown Court for what a judge described as his "appalling disregard" for her safety by signalling a train to pull out as she was leaning against a carriage.

The court heard the student was "legless" and had 0.083mg of the drug mephedrone, or Mcat, in her system at the time of her death.

But her mother, Paula Redmond, (41), said her daughter was a typical teenager out celebrating her friend's birthday on the night she died.

Describing her daughter as "wonderful", she said: "We have listened as our daughter was portrayed as being a drunken liability when, in all honesty, she did no more than what many teenagers do of a weekend – she went out to celebrate her friend's birthday.

"The only liability that night was a train guard whom Georgia had the catastrophic misfortune to encounter," she said after McGee was found guilty of manslaughter following an eight-day trial.

"For he had very little, if any, regard at all for our daughter and her safety," she said.

Mr Justice Holroyde said: "You alone determined whether the train remained stationary or began to move. Your decision and your action determined whether Georgia Varley was safe from risk."

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