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Mother of four children killed in a petrol bomb attack also dies

Brandon, Lacie and Lia Pearson, aged three, who along with their older sibling Demi, 15, died in a petrol bomb attack at their home on December 2017 in Walkden, Greater Manchester
By Ryan Hooper, PA

The mother of four children killed in a petrol bomb attack has died, more than a year-and-a-half after being injured in the blaze, her family have said.

Michelle Pearson had been in hospital since the fire in December 2017 in Walkden, Greater Manchester.

The blaze claimed the lives of siblings Demi Pearson (15), her brother Brandon (eight), and sisters Lacie (seven) and Lia (three).

Mrs Pearson's mother, Sandra Lever, wrote on Facebook: "Sadly last night, after a hard 20 months of fighting, our beautiful Michelle gained her wings and went to join her babies."

Leon Parkes, assistant county fire officer with Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, added: "We are all incredibly upset to learn of Michelle's passing, 20 months on from this tragic incident.

"I would like to extend our condolences to her friends and family and to those in the community in Walkden who have been affected in what must be a tremendously difficult time."

Three people have been convicted over the blaze – Zak Bolland and David Worrall were each convicted of four counts of murder and jailed for life, with minimum terms of 40 and 37 years respectively, while Courtney Brierley was jailed for 21 years for manslaughter.

The trial at Manchester Crown Court heard Bolland had been involved in a "petty" feud with Mrs Pearson's teenage son Kyle over damage to a car, prompting a series of tit-for-tat attacks.

A jury was told Bolland and Worrall were fuelled by drink and drugs as they filled two glass bottles with £1.50 of petrol bought from a local garage, stuffing the tops with tissue paper as they prepared the attack at 5am on December 11 2017.

Two lit petrol bombs were thrown inside Kyle's mother's home after the kitchen window was smashed.

Bolland hurled his bottle which "exploded" near the stairs, blocking the only exit to the ground floor and trapping the victims upstairs.

Within seconds, flames engulfed the three-bedroom mid-terrace home.

Mrs Pearson, then 36, woke up and screamed "Not the kids! Not my kids!" and dialled 999, but she was overcome with heat and smoke before completing the call.

Kyle managed to escape with a friend, Bobby Harris.

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