Inquest rules that the death of Hannah Defoe in St Lucia was manslaughter
January 2, 2015
Hannah Defoe, 20, died when she was electrocuted in a hotel swimming pool
in St Lucia in July 2012
An inquest into the death of Hannah Defoe, cousin of England footballer Jermain Defoe, who was electrocuted in a hotel swimming pool in St Lucia, has found that the young woman was unlawfully killed.
In July 2012 the victim and her family were staying at Juliette’s Lodge Hotel, a luxury resort in St Lucia, when the tragic incident occurred. Miss Defoe had dived into the hotel’s swimming pool when she let out a cry and disappeared below the surface of the water. She had been electrocuted.
Attempts to rescue Miss Defoe from the pool were made extremely difficult due to the fact that the water was live, meaning that anyone who tried to dive in and save her would also be electrocuted.
The victim’s aunt, Janet Defoe, told the inquest: “I ran to the pool and when I got there I saw Hannah’s body stretched out at the bottom of the pool. I jumped into the pool to rescue her. […] As soon as I jumped in I felt a fuzzy feeling over my whole body.”
Following the manslaughter verdict, Hannah's mother, Hope Defoe, 51, said: "We are very encouraged by this verdict as we were beginning to feel that it was all a charade.” She added, "We are very hopeful that criminal proceedings will follow but have been warned that this could take years."
Miss Defoe was an aspiring dancer and was on holiday as a reward for her hard work at college when she died, just weeks before her 21st birthday.