The family of a young soldier who died at the Deepcut army barracks 16 years ago have won a High Court action for a fresh inquest.Pte Geoff Gray, 17, from Seaham, County Durham, was found with two gunshot wounds to his head in 2001.The Army said he killed himself but an inquest returned an open verdict. On Tuesday, three judges sitting at the High Court ruled it was “necessary or desirable in the interests of justice” for a fresh inquest to be held.Live: More news from across the South EastThe case was heard by Lord Justice Bean, Mrs Justice Carr and Judge Mark Lucraft, who ordered that the inquest in 2002 should be quashed “together with the verdict and findings”.Lord Justice Bean said the scope of the new inquest “and the issue of whether the coroner should, or should not, sit with a jury, should be a matter for the coroner”.
Pte Gray’s family won the right to apply to the High Court for a fresh inquest after Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC agreed new evidence had come to light.The ruling comes after a judge gave the go-ahead for a fresh inquest into the death of Pte Sean Benton, 20, from Hastings in East Sussex.He was found with five bullet wounds to his chest at the Surrey barracks in 1995.His inquest is due to take place at Surrey Coroner’s Court, in Woking, from 24 January next year. Who were the Deepcut four? Pte Benton was the first of four young soldiers to die of gunshot wounds at the barracks between 1995 and 2002.Pte Cheryl James, 18, from Llangollen, North Wales, shot herself in November 1995, according to a second inquest into her death which concluded in June last year.Following Pte Gray’s death in 2001, Pte James Collinson, 17, from Perth in Scotland, was found dead with a single gunshot wound to the head on 23 March 2002.
Source: BBC Tyne and Wear