Criminal probe into death of killer whale trainer Amy Gerard in Tenerife shelved
A Spanish judge has shelved a criminal probe into the Tenerife death of British killer whale trainer Amy Gerard after accepting all current evidence points to her dying by accident.
Amy’s German boyfriend Dennis Kissling was told in April he would face a court quiz in a dramatic turn of events after court officials said the expat’s death was being treated as a possible homicide.
But officials on the holiday island confirmed today the investigating judge had concluded there was no evidence pointing to her death being violent.
The decision was taken after Mr Kissling appeared in court to give evidence in a private hearing.
He has been told he will not face charges unless any new evidence comes to light pointing to Amy’s death being the result of a crime.
The 28-year-old’s body was discovered on December 4 last year floating in the sea off Puerto de la Cruz in Tenerife after she went missing on November 30 following a night out at a pub with her boyfriend and friends.
A secrecy order was placed over the court probe into her disappearance and death as it emerged a court specialising in violence against women was dealing with the case.
An official speaking on behalf of the investigating judge in charge of the Court for Violence Against Women in La Orotova, where Grimsby, Lincolnshire-born Amy was living when she disappeared, said: “The court has today (WED) agreed the provisional shelving of the investigation sparked by the death of Amy Louise Gerard, the 28-year-old whose body appeared off Puerto de la Cruz on December 4 last year.
“The court has confirmed that the case against her boyfriend, who gave a statement to the judge as a possible suspect in Amy’s death, has been archived.
“Amy disappeared on November 30 last year. She was last seen alive in a bar in Puerto de la Cruz in the company of several people, including the man who was placed under formal investigation.
“The court that was initially in charge of the investigation handed it over to the court in La Orotava specialising in violence against women.
“After an investigation lasting several months, the court has concluded there is no evidence supporting it being a violent death.
“The case will not be closed permanently. If in the future new evidence emerges pointing to it not being accidental, it could be re-opened.
“But at the moment the investigating judge and state prosecutors feel there is nothing to warrant continuing the criminal probe.
“Forensic experts have stated the marks on Amy’s body are compatible with an accidental fall into the sea and her body hitting rocks.”
Amy and Dennis, colleagues at Tenerife marine theme park Loro Parque, were said to have been spotted going their separate ways after leaving the Molly Malone pub.
Police were told university graduate Amy, who was estranged from her personal trainer husband Ryan Docherty, was not a big drinker and had not looked inebriated or tipsy when she left the pub.
Ryan, believed to be in Britain when Amy went missing, made appeals for information on her whereabouts after she disappeared.
Tenerife Police appeared to rule out the existence of a crime three days after the discovery of Amy’s body by saying the “apparent circumstances” leading to her death did not seem to have been the result of a “violent act.”
Afterwards a Tenerife radio station claimed forensic experts who had carried out a post-mortem on Amy had ruled out the idea of a violent death.
However officials made no official comment because of the secrecy order.
Mr Kissling never responded to messages left for him before it emerged he was under investigation.
Mum Julie, 59, and sister Chloe, 30, flew to Tenerife with Chloe’s fiancé after learning of Amy’s disappearance.
Amy's family said in a statement released nearly a fortnight after the discovery of her body: “The DNA results confirm our worst nightmare and we are all heartbroken that Amy is no longer with us.
“The police investigation is ongoing and there is no further information to share at this time."
Matthew Searle MBE, Chief Executive of the Lucie Blackman Trust, which was set up by the family of Lucie Blackman after she was killed in Tokyo by a millionaire Japanese businessman and has been helping Amy’s family, added at the time: “This is the worst news for the family just before Christmas.
"The thoughts of all of us here at the charity are with Amy's family and we continue to support them. The family have asked for privacy and we hope this is afforded them.”
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