x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Dead teenager 'fell from 11th floor of building'

Boy was at a party on Friday night at which there was 'light drinking', Dubai Police CID chief says.

DUBAI // A 15-year-old British boy who died at the weekend fell from the 11th floor of a building under construction, police said yesterday.

An investigation into the death of Harry Harling, who was in Year 11 at Jumeirah College, continues.

Maj Gen Khalil Al Mansouri, the head of Dubai Police CID, said the teenager was at a party on Friday night at which there was "light drinking". Harry left the party and went to the building site.

Maj Gen Al Mansouri said no criminal intent was suspected in the boy's death.

In a circular from Jumeirah College on Sunday, the principal urged friends to help officials with information about Harry's whereabouts at the time of the incident.

"If any student had contact with Harry over the weekend and feels that they can assist the police in piecing together a clearer picture of his movements, the college can put you in touch with the appropriate investigating officer," the college's statement read.

Fiona Cottam, chief executive of the college, said support and counselling would be offered to Harry's fellow pupils.

"As a community we will support each other in the days and weeks ahead," she said.

According to Dubai law, people under the age of 21 should not be able to obtain alcoholic beverages.

Sarah Dayal, a psychologist with Raffles International School in Dubai, suggested parents be watchful of their children's actions and that schools have programmes highlighting the dangers of alcohol.

"Also, there should be zero tolerance for underage drinking and its consequences reinforced," she said. "A good idea is to involve high school children in community service, especially at rehabilitation centres, where they know what such habits could lead them to."

Harry's friends and family continued to post tribute messages on social networking websites yesterday.

"The sky cried today for you Harry Harling, but they must be tears of joy," said one message on Twitter. "Hope you're OK up there."

aahmed@thenational.ae

amustafa@thenational.ae