Sixth child dies in school jumping castle tragedy

·Assistant News Editor
·2-min read

A sixth child has died in hospital as a result of Devonport's Hillcrest Primary School tragedy, Tasmanian police say.

“It is with a heavy heart that I can confirm an 11-year-old boy passed away in hospital this afternoon,” Commissioner Darren Hine said on Sunday afternoon.

“His name is Chace Harrison.”

The latest victim has been named as 11-year-old Chace Harrison.
The latest victim has been identified as 11-year-old Chace Harrison. Source: ABC News

“Our thoughts continue to be with his family, and the families and loved ones of all the children involved, during what is an incomprehensibly difficult time.”

Eleven-year-old Addison Stewart, and Zane Mellor, Jye Sheehan, Jalailah Jayne-Maree Jones, Peter Dodt, all 12, lost their lives when a gust of wind sent a jumping castle 10 metres into the air during year-end celebrations at the school on Thursday.

Two children remain in a critical conditon in Royal Hobart Hospital. Another is now recovering at home.

From left to right, Addison Stewart, 11, Jye Sheehan, 12, Zane Mellor, 12, Jalailah Jayne-Marie Jones, 12, and Peter Dodt, 12, had already been identified by police, with permission from their families, as tragically killed in the jumping castle accident. Source: AAP
From left to right, Addison Stewart, 11, Jye Sheehan, 12, Zane Mellor, 12, Jalailah Jayne-Marie Jones, 12, and Peter Dodt, 12, had already been identified by police, with permission from their families, as tragically killed in the jumping castle accident. Source: AAP

“We are working tirelessly with all parties concerned to ensure the extensive investigation is completed as a matter of priority for the Coroner,” Mr Hine said.

“The investigation is being led by Devonport Criminal Investigation Branch, with assistance from officers from Launceston CIB, under the direction of the Coroner.

“Their priority will be to interview all witnesses, gather and analyse forensic evidence and all environmental aspects, including weather patterns and conditions at the time of the incident.

“Given the magnitude of this critical incident and the need to speak to a large number of traumatised children within a short period of time, we have accepted an offer from NSW Police to assist in conducting interviews in relation to the investigation.”

“Four forensic child interviewers will travel to Tasmania today to help conduct interviews with young witnesses over the coming days.”

Flowers and tributes are seen outside Hillcrest Primary School in Devonport on Friday. Source: AAP
Flowers and tributes are seen outside Hillcrest Primary School in Devonport on Friday. Source: AAP

The tragedy has rocked the nation and sparked an outpouring of grief and support with more than $1.3 million raised by one GoFundMe page in just a few days. 

The state and federal governments have both announced funding and mental health support for the families and community members affected. 

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