No criminal charges to be brought in relation to Berkeley balcony tragedy

The Alameda County District Attorney has announced that her office will not be filing criminal charges in relation to the Berkeley balcony collapse last June.

Five Irish students and an Irish American lost their lives when the balcony collapsed on June 16 last year, while 7 others were injured.

The students who died in the accident were Olivia Burke, Eoghan Colligan, Niccolai Schuster, Lorcan Miller and Eimear Walsh, all from Dublin.

The sixth, Ashley Donohoe, was from Northern California but had dual Irish-American citizenship. She and Ms Burke were cousins.

Nancy O’Malley, the District Attorney for Alameda County, has said having carefully considered all the known evidence, and conducting an in-depth legal analysis based on expert opinion, her office has concluded that there is insufficient evidence to bring criminal manslaughter charges against any one individual or company.

In a statement this evening Ms O’Malley said this is not a decision she came to lightly.

Meanwhile, the acting Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has said his department will carefully consider the details of the District Attorney's findings.

Flanagan added while the investigation did not find sufficient proof to take separate criminal proceedings, it has shone a vital light on the circumstances and factors that contributed directly and indirectly to the collapse of the balcony.


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