I drove past spot where my daughter, 20, lay trapped alive for 48hrs next to bodies of her pals in Newport crash wreck | The Sun

A MUM has told how she drove past where her missing daughter lay trapped for 48 hours alongside three of her dead friends in an horrific car wreck.

Anna Certowicz, 41, was frantically looking for her daughter Sophie, 20, who didn’t come home after a night out with her two best friends.

Police today discovered three bodies after Rafel Jeanne-Actie, Eve Smith, 21, Darcy Ross, 21, Sophie Russon, 20, and Shane Loughlin vanished on Friday night.

The group had not been seen since enjoying a night out at the Muffler nightclub in Newport, Wales.

When police failed to launch a search for the missing girls Anna and other relatives went out looking them.

Mum-of-three Anna said: “I drove past her three times, she was 20 yards away lying there scared next to her friends who were dead.


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“But I didn’t see her because of the trees and there was a dip – it’s a busy road, thousands of people must have gone past.”

Trainee bank manager Sophie was left seriously injured as a result of the crash.

Anna said: “She was lying there wondering if help would ever arrive. She must have thought she was going to die. It is terrifying.

“It would have got light and then dark as night fell on Saturday, then she had to go through that again until she was found.

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“But she had head injuries so she may not have really known what was going on, at least I hope she didn’t.”

Police have not confirmed the identities of those killed in the crash – but Eve Smith's family has confirmed she is one of the dead.

Sophie and one other are currently in a critical condition in hospital.

Gwent Police said: "Three of those who were reported missing have been found deceased, two have been taken to hospital with serious injuries."

The VW Tiguan they were travelling in was recovered just after midnight on Monday March 6.

Anna has blasted Gwent Police for not taking the disappearance of her daughter and her friends seriously.

She believes Sophie would have been spared the ordeal of laying next to her dead friends for two days if cops had acted sooner.

And she says her daughter would have got quicker medical help if she had been found.

Anna said: “The next 48 hours are critical – she is having surgery now and we are hoping and praying.

“I can’t stop thinking about how Sophie had to lie there wondering if she would ever be found.”

Anna made her first call to Gwent Police on Saturday lunchtime after Sophie failed to come home from a night out with her two friends she had known since infant school.

She made 10 calls that day but police kept telling her not to worry and that she was probably out partying.

Anna said: “I told them that wasn’t Sophie, she’s a good girl and doesn’t go out on weekend benders. It was out of character.

“No one could reach her on her mobile on social media which she uses all the time.

“I made another 10 calls on Sunday and the police told me to stop ringing – they weren’t annoyed, just dismissive.”

Gwent Police suddenly escalated the inquiry into the missing five people and a helicopter was launched to search the area.

Anna said it flew over the wooded area where the white VW Tiguan was found but failed to spot the car.

By that time more than 200 people were out looking and the car was found by a woman searching with her dog.

Anna had a call from her older daughter Georgia, 23, at midnight on Sunday saying the car had been found.

Gwent Police has been referred to the Independent Office of Police Conduct who will carry out an investigation.

Anna said: “I’m glad they are investigating, I’m not happy about the way it was handled.

“We went to the accident scene and were kept standing there for two hours with no information being given.

“There was a crowd of about 200 people and the police did nothing to segregate shocked and grieving relatives from the public. There was no privacy for us.”

Anna said she had not slept since Saturday morning and was on her way to hospital to see Sophie after she came out of theatre.

She added: “They let me in to see her last night but she all tubed up and not conscious. We are all just hoping and praying she makes it.”

It comes as it’s been revealed that Darcy had posted photos of her and Rafel partying that night.

It comes as…

  • Three pals were found dead in a crashed car after five people vanished while on a night out in Newport
  • Eve Smith, 21, was confirmed dead by her family, who had tragically lost her sister in a crash eight years ago
  • Two pals were pictured beaming on the night out before the tragedy
  • The mum of Sophie Russon claimed cops told her to stop calling
  • She has now revealed her agony at desperately searching for her daughter while she lay critically injured
  • Haunting CCTV was shared by friends of the car before it vanished in the early hours of Saturday
  • Police are now probing just what happened in the hours before the crash

The pic shows the pair smiling, with Rafel’s arm around Darcy.

It’s thought she posted the photo to her Snapchat story on the night they went missing.

Meanwhile haunting CCTV has shown the white car the group had been travelling in before it was involved in a road traffic collision and came off the A48.

The snaps, shared by the young people’s families during the search, show the white car carrying the friends.

Specialist officers are supporting the families of those involved and enquiries are ongoing.

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Anyone with any information is asked to call police on 101, or send a direct message on social media, quoting 2300071791.

The case has been referred to the IOPC in line with normal procedures.

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