Man denies charges after US polo star’s death in Christchurch

A man charged after the sudden death of a US polo star in the spa pool of a hillside Christchurch house will stand trial later this year.

Lauren Mikaila Biddle, 22, died at a hillside house in the Christchurch suburb of Clifton on October 22, 2018.

Biddle, a promising American polo player, had been in New Zealand for just over a week.

She had planned to stay in Clifton, working and playing polo, until March last year.

Her family was shocked by the death of their “vibrant, fun-loving” girl.

Joseph Douglas McGirr, a 38-year-old Christchurch civil engineer, was arrested after Biddle’s sudden death at his property.

McGirr has pleaded not guilty to two charges of supplying a Class-B controlled drug MDMA, cultivating cannabis, and attempting to pervert the course of justice.

His attendance was excused when his case called at the Christchurch District Court this afternoon.

Judge Jane Farish confirmed a five-day trial is scheduled to start on November 16.

Devastated father Tommy Biddle Snr earlier said his daughter was not only an accomplished polo player, but was also into show jumping and equestrian.

“She was an amazing rider,” he said.

“We’ll never get over it but we’re trying to move forward, and figure out ways to cope with it.”

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