Dhirren Randhawa, 18-year-old man from Encounter Bay, has been charged with causing the death of Charlie Stevens.
SA Police told media that the car allegedly involved in the collision failed to stop and was later pulled over by officers nearby on Port Elliot Road at Goolwa.
Grant Stevens, the SA police commissioner, and his wife Emma have also made a public statement regarding the loss of their son:
“101 is Charles Hinchliffe Stevens — Charlie, Charlie Boy, Chas, Links, Steve. You lived life and gave so much to so many. You were a force of nature and we will never forget your beautiful, cheeky, disarming smile.”
The parents remembered their youngest son Charlie as “Cheeky, intense and funny — a lovable ratbag from the moment he could talk.”
The family also raised awareness on the importance of organ donation.
The premier of South Australia, Peter Malinauskas, said the thoughts of all were with the Stevens family.
“Grant Stevens has served South Australia as a member of South Australian police for over 40 years. His whole life he has dedicated himself to protecting others, protecting South Australians from evil, protecting us from disease. He has shown extraordinary leadership in some of the most difficult circumstances this state has ever confronted and it is just so unjust that he and his family have now had to endure this great tragedy themselves.”
Charlie was on Beach Road at Goolwa Beach for an end-of-school celebration when he was allegedly struck by a car at 9pm on Friday.
He was airlifted to Flinders Medical Centre with an irreversible brain injury.
Charlie died at 7.01pm on Saturday night, surrounded by family and friends, SA Police confirmed.
Charlie had just begun work as an apprentice carpenter.
Floral tributes have been laid at the scene of tragedy in Goolwa Beach.
Dhirren was granted bail in Christies Beach Magistrates Court via videolink.
As per reports he has been charged with causing death by dangerous driving, aggravated driving without due care, leaving the scene of a crash after causing death and failing to truly answer questions.
Dhirren’s lawyer, Jane Abbey KC, told the court that her client would accept all conditions requested by the prosecution, including that he live at his mother’s home, surrender his passport, not enter the driver’s seat of a vehicle and provide a $15,000 guarantee.
His drivers licence has been disqualified indefinitely and will now face the Adelaide Magistrates court in March 2024.
Commissioner Stevens and wife Emma have thanked all SAPOL staff, first responders and other emergency services workers who attended the incident.
The Stevens family have also thanked the wider community for their support during this difficult time.
SA Police are investigating the circumstances leading up to the crash, anyone with further information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or report on line at www.crimestopperssa.com.au – you can remain anonymous.
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