Parents break down over kids' deaths, 'drunk' driver charged

 

THE PARENTS of three children who were killed alongside their family friend in a horrific crash in Sydney's north west have broken down in agony as police described the incident as one of the most tragic they had ever experienced.

Antony Abdallah, 13, his two sisters Angelina, 12, and Sienna, 8, and their family friend, an 11-year-old girl, were killed when 29-year-old Samuel Davidson allegedly mounted the kerb on Bettington Rd at Oatlands and struck them with his Mitsubishi ute.

Antony Abdallah, 13 (left), and Angelina Abdallah, 12 (right).
Antony Abdallah, 13 (left), and Angelina Abdallah, 12 (right).

The group of children had been walking and riding bikes on the footpath on their way to get ice cream with their babysitter and three other children about 8pm on Saturday when they were hit.

Sienna Abdallah, 8.
Sienna Abdallah, 8.

Another boy, aged 11, was stable in a coma while two other girls, aged 10 and 13, were transported to The Children's Hospital at Westmead with cuts and bruises.

After remaining at the scene until officers arrived, Davidson was arrested and taken to Castle Hill Police Station where he allegedly blew a breath analysis of 0.150.

He was charged with 20 offences including four counts of manslaughter and high-range drink driving.

Davidson did not appear at Parramatta Local Court on Sunday, where he was formally refused bail.

Magistrate John McIntosh shook his head as he read the facts and adjourned the case until April 2.

The mother of three of the children, Leila Geagea (left), grieving at the site with relatives on Sunday morning. Picture: Adam Yip
The mother of three of the children, Leila Geagea (left), grieving at the site with relatives on Sunday morning. Picture: Adam Yip

It is believed Davidson had been drinking nearby at home before he got in his car and drove to the shops.

The siblings' father, Daniel Abdallah, 41, arrived at the crash scene on Sunday morning and broke down, falling down onto his knees.

Daniel and Leila with Antony (far left), Sienna (second left at bottom) and Angelina (far right). Picture: Supplied
Daniel and Leila with Antony (far left), Sienna (second left at bottom) and Angelina (far right). Picture: Supplied

"I have a wife Leila, six beautiful children I have been blessed with," he said.

"Yesterday, I lost three of my children. I had a cousin, she lost her daughter as well. I don't know what to say. I'm numb. Probably that's how I feel at the moment.

"All I just want to say is please, drivers, be careful. These kids were just walking innocently, enjoying each others' company, and this morning I woke up - I have lost three kids."

Mr Abdallah said he shared a special bond with his three killed children Antony, 13, Angelina, 12, and Sienna, 8.

"Antony is 13, very handsome boy and he loved basketball, he woke up that morning and said we're going to play this game for Kobe," Mr Abdallah said.

"Angelina she was my MLH - my little helper. Anything I needed, she had my back.

"And Sienna, she was my little diva, my little actress.

"They've gone to a better place."

Mr Abdallah said he loved raising his young children with his wife Leila, 34.

"We had six kids, 10 years and under, it was beautiful, we loved it, it wasn't a problem," he said.

Antony (far left), Sienna (bottom left in red top) and Angelina (far right). Picture: Supplied
Antony (far left), Sienna (bottom left in red top) and Angelina (far right). Picture: Supplied

"That was my full-time job, I always say I was a full-time father, part-time worker, they were my priority. And now they're gone."

Mr Abdallah said another child in the crash was in a coma and another had escaped serious injury.

"They were all related and were all coming over to get babysat and I told them to go for a walk, a little walk and stay together you guys should be OK, give them a little independence and this is a one in a million chance thing," he said.

"They were just walking on the footpath. Please, just make sure you love your loved ones, your kids especially, because you don't know when."

The driver was taken into custody last night. He has now been charged with 20 offences including manslaughter. Pictures: Channel 9
The driver was taken into custody last night. He has now been charged with 20 offences including manslaughter. Pictures: Channel 9

The crash happened around the corner from the family home in a quiet, residential pocket of Oatlands, near the golf club.

The street has a 50km/h speed limit but witnesses described skid marks on the footpath by the road.

The wrecked car. Police believe alcohol may have been a factor in the accident. Picture: TNV
The wrecked car. Police believe alcohol may have been a factor in the accident. Picture: TNV

Traumatic scenes unfolded on the street as distraught family members and friends gathered.

A man, believed to be the father of three of the children, is comforted by police. Picture: TNV
A man, believed to be the father of three of the children, is comforted by police. Picture: TNV

One woman, supported by a friend, wept as she was embraced by friends and eventually collapsed to the ground.

Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy said the loss of the four children was one of the worst moments of his career.

"Tragedies do occur, but in my time in policing, this is on the most tragic involving young children dying in a very tragic circumstance," he said.

A resident of Bettington Rd said he was outside near his garage when he heard car brakes, skidding and "a great big crash."

"There were skid marks leading onto the footpath. I don't know CPR," he said.

"I know the family affected and I know the children. The family is close to us."

Another witness said residents ran out of their homes and attempted to save the children's lives.

"People ran over and were doing CPR until the paramedics got here," the nearby homeowner said. "One woman was screaming out: 'Save them, save them'."

It is understood Davidson's 24-year-old passenger also attempted to help some of the children before 18 paramedics arrived.

A message posted to the Living Maronite Facebook page read: "Tonight before you sleep we ask that you remember in your prayers a young Maronite family from our Parish who has been devastatingly affected by a serious accident. We keep them all in our prayers."



‘Very risky’: Huge spike in calls to remove snakes during lockdown

premium_icon ‘Very risky’: Huge spike in calls to remove snakes during...

Snake catcher Sarah Mailey’s phone has been ringing off the hook with reptiles...

All Gold Coast beachside carparks to be closed

premium_icon All Gold Coast beachside carparks to be closed

All beachside carparking on Gold Coast to be closed

‘Massively inconvenienced’: Tweed man blocked 50m from home

premium_icon ‘Massively inconvenienced’: Tweed man blocked 50m from home

A quick trip to the shops ended in frustration for Tweed man