Two boys, 14, GUILTY of murdering Olly Stephens, 13, who was lured to park and stabbed to death
TWO teenage boys have been found guilty of murdering 13-year-old Olly Stephens who was “lured” to a park before being stabbed.
Oliver Stephens, known as Olly, was killed at Bugs Bottom field in Emmer Green, Reading, Berkshire, on January 3.
A jury at Reading Crown Court found the two 14-year-old boys, who cannot be named for legal reasons, guilty of the murder after deliberating for more than 18 hours.
Both boys had denied charges of murder during the five week trial but now face being locked up for life.
The girl, who also cannot be named, and the older of the teenage boys had both previously admitted manslaughter.
Teenager Olly believed that he was meeting a former girlfriend to share tobacco, but was stabbed to death in a frenzied ambush, having been "lured" to his tragic death.
Boy A appeared over video link, after having to self-isolate, as the unanimous verdict was read out.
Olly’s family wept as the verdicts were read out, and held hands next to a signed rugby shirt placed on an empty seat alongside them to mark their son's "presence."
Paramedics frantically tried to save Olly’s life just yards from his front door before moving the boy to an ambulance, undertaking emergency surgery to his chest wall following the collapse of his left lung.
Despite their best efforts, the surprise set-up left the High Down School pupil fatally injured and was declared dead at 5pm before his horrified parents and sister were brought to the ambulance to say their goodbyes.
Throughout the trial, the court heard how 14-year-old Boy B was angry at Olly after he "snaked" him, which led to planning the killer attack.
The "top grade" older defendant arranged with the schoolgirl to lure Olly to the park and asked Boy A to bring a knife with him.
The girl sent a sickening voice note expressing her excitement at the prospect of setting-up Olly.
She said: "Hey b***h….um, I’m setting up Olly so….kinda scared, I’m not going to lie."
I started slapping him up and then my boy backed out and then f*****g shanked him.
After luring Olly to the spot, just yards from his home, Boy B attacked and the pair fought each other, with Boy A jumping in to stab Olly twice.
After the brutal knifing, the boys fled the scene on an e-scooter, before Boy B sent a voice note saying "Something serious has happened….you probably won’t see me for a long time."
One hour after Olly was declared dead, Boy A was spotted on CCTV carrying a bag of his bloodstained clothes before meeting Boy B at the railway line in Reading, Berks, and disposing of them.
Two weeks after the tragic death, an investigating police officer discovered a black drawstring near Palmer Park – containing Nike tracksuit bottoms, Nike shorts and a pair of North Face gloves.
Boy B admitted perverting the course of justice after dumping the clothes, but Boy B was today convicted for his part in dumping the bloodstained clothes before he created a chilling voice note.
He said: "Boy it was me and my boy innit. I started slapping him up and then my boy backed out and then f*****g shanked him."
Boy A, who was 13 at the time of the killing, searched the internet hours after Olly's death searching for "stabbing in emmer green" and "stabbing in Reading."
In a shocking set of messages, a school friend messaged Boy A asking: "Did you kill Olly – why would you do that?"
In response, the teenage boy replied: "It was the biggest mistake of my life” and went on in separate messages to say he was sorry and claimed the attack was out of "pure anger."
He added: "No I did not plan to f**king kill him…..I didn’t mean too….I just saw red….I couldn’t help myself."
After the brutal attack, Boy B attempted to destroy incriminating photographs and videos from his mobile phone.
He admitted perverting the course of justice having deleted 57 images and 15 video files that linked him to what happened on January 3, which included an image of him holding a knife in his hand.
Today Boy A was cleared of perverting the course of justice having deleted social media apps from his phone following the stabbing.
Both boys will appear at Reading Crown Court for their sentencing hearing, and could face life imprisonment.
Concluding the hearing, Judge Heather Norton said to the jury: "I can’t say thank you enough, but thank you, and try to put this behind you."
In a statement issued through police after his death, Olly's family described the youngster as "an enigma" who "could get his own way with a wry smile and a cheeky grin".
They added: "An Olly-sized hole has been left in our hearts."
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