Manchester

Second girl dies after Oldham 'hit-and-run'

Family handout showing victims Helina Kotlarova, 12, and Zaneta Krokova, 11 Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Helina Kotlarova (left) was killed in the collision and her 11-year-old cousin Zaneta Krokova died on Monday

A second girl has died after an apparent hit-and-run in Oldham on New Year's Eve that killed her cousin.

Zaneta Krokova, 11, died in hospital from the injuries she suffered in the collision.

Her cousin Helina Kotlarova, 12, died at the scene on Ashton Road at about 19:15 GMT on Saturday.

Four men aged 59, 48, 38 and 18 remain in custody after being arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.

A fifth man, aged 23, who was initially arrested for the same offence has been de-arrested and is assisting police with enquiries, said a Greater Manchester Police (GMP) spokesman.

People are continuing to lay floral tributes at the scene.

Image copyright GMP
Image caption Police want more information about the car involved in the crash

Sgt Lee Westhead, from GMP's Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: "This is a heart-breaking incident which has now taken the lives of two young girls and all of our thoughts remain with their families, who are understandably devastated.

"We have made significant progress with our investigation since the collision happened and I would like to thank everyone who has contacted police with information so far."

He said GMP officers had now identified the car as a Blue Peugeot 807.

The car was found abandoned on Honeywell Lane.

Sgt Westhead added: "I am releasing pictures of the vehicle in an attempt to establish its movements on 31 December in the hours prior to the collision.

"As you can see in the images, the vehicle is dark blue, people carrier shaped and is in poor physical condition and notably has pre-existing damage to its rear window."

Image caption Floral tributes have been left at the scene of the collision

Michael Greaves, a learning mentor from the Oasis Academy in Oldham, which the girls attended, said their deaths had "hit everyone hard".

"I know I've been in touch with a lot of staff and they're deeply saddened by it and it's really affected them over this New Year period."

Helina's sister Sylva, 19, said on Sunday the two girls were holding hands as they crossed the road.

They had been out with a larger group of family and friends who had already crossed and were waiting on the opposite pavement.

"She had asked mum for £2 as she just wanted to buy some food," she said.

"It is just hard to believe she has gone, she was just too young."

The family of seven sisters and one brother came to England from the Czech Republic eight years ago.

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