A U.S. diplomat's wife and graduate from South Aiken High School, who left the United Kingdom after reportedly becoming a suspect in a deadly crash there, is being urged to return to the U.K. to face investigation.
"Out of privacy and security concerns" the U.S. State Department will not comment on the identity of the driver involved in the death of 19-year-old British motorcyclist Harry Dunn, a State Department official told the Aiken Standard on Monday.
However, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson identified the suspect in the fatal collision as Anne Sacoolas in an interview with BBC.
Sacoolas fled to the United States seeking diplomatic immunity after allegedly striking and killing Dunn near the Royal Air Force Croughton Station on Aug. 27.
On Saturday, British authorities confirmed a 42-year-old American woman was a suspect in the investigation and that she engaged fully with the department at the time of the incident and confirmed she had no plans to leave the country in the near future; however, the suspect eventually did flee the U.K., according to a news release from Northamptonshire Police Department.
Dunn died after his motorcycle collided with a car near RAF Croughton, a British military base near Oxford. The base is home to a signals intelligence station operated by the U.S. Air Force.
"Due process was also followed in seeking the necessary documentation to allow for the arrest and formal interview of the suspect, and the Force is now exploring all opportunities through diplomatic channels to ensure that the investigation continues to progress," Superintendent Sarah Johnson, with the Head of Operations for Northamptonshire Police, said.
Sarah Johnson said the department is also working closely with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in an effort to come to a resolution for the case.
“Harry Dunn’s family deserve justice and in order to achieve this, a full and thorough investigation, with the assistance of all parties involved, needs to take place," Sarah Johnson said. “Northamptonshire Police is committed to ensuring justice for Harry and specially trained officers continue to support the Dunn family in their loss, including keeping them fully informed of all developments in the investigation.”
Boris Johnson said he will speak with the U.S. ambassador to the U.K. about the case, according to the Associated Press.
He also said Monday he does not think it is right to "use the process of diplomatic immunity for this purpose" and will raise the issue with the White House if necessary, according to the Associated Press.
Boris Johnson urged Sacoolas to return to the U.K. to face investigation.
Sacoolas, formerly Anne Elizabeth Goodwin, is a graduate of South Aiken High School and a graduate of the University of South Carolina, according to a wedding announcement published in the Aiken Standard on June 29, 2003.
She was employed by the State Department in Washington, D.C., and her husband, Jonathan Patrick Sacoolas, was employed by the Department of Defense in Washington, D.C., according to the 2003 announcement.
“We express our deepest sympathies and offer condolences to the family of the deceased in this tragic traffic accident," a Department of State official said to the Aiken Standard. "Any questions regarding a waiver of the immunity with regard to our diplomats and their family members overseas in a case like this receive intense attention at senior levels and are considered carefully given the global impact such decisions carry; immunity is rarely waived. The U.S. Embassy has been and will continue to be in close contact with British officials."
According to the 1961 Vienna Convention, diplomats and their family members are immune from prosecution in their host country, as long as they are not nationals of that country. However, their immunity can be waived by the state that has sent them.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Check back with the Aiken Standard as this story will be updated.