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Teen trio to be sentenced for ‘ambush’ murder of 13-year-old Olly Stephens

By PA News

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Three schoolchildren who lured 13-year-old Oliver Stephens to a park where he was stabbed to death after a dispute on social media will be sentenced for their roles in his killing.

Two boys were convicted of murdering the victim, described by his family as a “warm, kind, soulful” boy, following a trial at Reading Crown Court this summer.

A girl, who set up the “ambush”, already admitted manslaughter and did not stand trial.

The three defendants, all now 14 years old, cannot be named because of their age.

Olly Stephens was stabbed and killed near his home after being lured to a park by a teenage girl (Thames Valley Police/PA)
Olly Stephens was stabbed and killed near his home after being lured to a park by a teenage girl (Thames Valley Police/PA)

The trial previously heard that the victim, widely known as Olly, was convinced to go Bugs Bottom field near his home in Emmer Green, Reading, Berkshire, by the girl, where he was then “ambushed” by the two boys and stabbed to death.

The court heard both boys had “grievances” with Olly, who had autism, while the girl is said to have described any violence against him as “karma” in the run-up to his death.

It was said that the younger of the two boys, aged 13 at the time, inflicted the fatal blows on Olly’s body.

The younger boy will be sentenced for murder, and perverting the course of justice after he admitted disposing of clothing worn at the time of the attack.

The older boy will be sentenced for murder, and two counts of perverting the course of justice for deleting apps from his mobile phone, which he admitted, and for throwing away clothes worn during the attack, which he denied but was convicted of.

The girl pleaded guilty to manslaughter and perverting the course of justice by deleting data from her mobile phone.

The trial was held in special conditions, with frequent breaks and counsel removing their gowns and wigs, due to the defendants’ ages.

Olly’s family described him as “a loving, caring, funny soul who would stick up for the underdog”.

In a statement following the trial, they said: “He was a huge character in and around our home, with his friends and at school.

“He made people laugh, he could dance with the best of them, and he gave his love freely.

“His sense of humour and his wicked comic timing had us and his friends in stitches many a time.

“He was warm, kind, soulful, a deep thinker and a great carer to those around him.

“He was loyal and trusted people to a fault.

“He would never back down from a fight, he would defend those that couldn’t or wouldn’t defend themselves.”

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