Nora Anne had disabilities, couldn’t have climbed out window, inquest told

Nora Anne Quoirin, who went missing last year, was unable to write well and to construct proper sentences.

SEREMBAN: Nora Anne Quoirin’s head teacher today told the Coroner’s Court here that his student had physical and learning disabilities during her four-year education at Garratt Park School in London.

Michael Revees, 59, said Nora Anne was enrolled in the school in September 2015 and during the first assessment, the school found the French-Irish teenager had learning difficulties, and that her health condition limited her cognitive response, motor skills and her verbal communication.

He said due to these conditions, Nora Anne was unable to write well and to construct proper sentences. She could only follow simple instructions and did not converse with strangers.

“She lacked confidence in other people and sometimes she had trouble (with it)… at times she was always cheerful and had a strong sense of right and wrong.

“She found it difficult to take part in any programme and she was unable to run due to a fear of falling,” he said.

Michael, who is the 37th witness at the inquest to determine the cause of Nora Anne’s death, said this when testifying on the 17th day of the proceedings before Coroner Maimoonah Aid. The proceeding today was held online due to the conditional movement control order (CMCO).

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Asked by the family’s counsel Louise Azmi about the claim that Nora Anne could have climbed out of the window of the chalet where she and her family were staying during their holiday in Malaysia in August last year, Michael, who has worked at the school since 2006, said it was unimaginable.

“No. I simply don’t believe she could have done that. I can’t imagine her having the skill, balance or strength to climb out,” he added.

Asked whether the teenager could have been able to walk on difficult terrain with hard rocks, Michael said: “She would have found it difficult even for a short distance… it would’ve been very difficult for her to do so.”

Replying to coroner Maimoonah’s question on Nora Anne’s progress during her four years in school, he said there was little progress.

Maimoonah: Do you know about Nora Anne’s diet or toilet habits?

Michael: Yes. Nora was able to eat her own meal without any difficulty and she was completely independent in going to the toilet during her school days.

Nora Anne, 15, went missing on Aug 4 last year, a day after she and her family arrived in Malaysia for a two-week holiday at a resort in Pantai here, about 60km south of Kuala Lumpur.

Nora Anne’s body was found nine days later, on Aug 13, near a stream in a hilly area, about 2.5 km from the resort, following a massive search operation.

A preliminary post-mortem report revealed there was no criminal element in Nora Anne’s death and that the teenager had died of gastrointestinal bleeding due to prolonged stress and hunger.

The court proceeding was later adjourned to Nov 23.

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