Police charged a 13-year-old girl and two boys, aged 13 and 14 with the murder of Olly Stephens who was stabbed to death in a countryside park near his home in Reading last week.
The teenagers have been charged with murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm following an investigation by Thames Valley Police.
Two of the three individuals have also been charged with perverting the course of justice.
They have been remanded in custody to appear at Reading Magistrates’ Court tomorrow.
Olly Stephens, 13, was stabbed at Bugs Bottom field, Emmer Green, two miles north of Reading city centre in Berkshire on January 3.
Witnesses said passers-by desperately tried to revive Olly while they waited for paramedics but he was pronounced dead at the scene.
The park is only 250 yards from the home Olly shared with his sister, mother Amanda, who works in HR, and father Stuart, both aged 51.
Investigating Officer Detective Superintendent Kevin Brown said, “This continues to be a very difficult time for the family of Olly.
“Our thoughts remain with them. The Stephens family appreciate all of the kindness shown to them but they have asked that their privacy is respected at this very difficult time.
“Anyone with any information is asked to get in touch and report it, and to refrain from posting this information on social media.’
This week, Olly’s parents, Amanda and Stewart, and older sister Emilia mourned their ‘hilariously funny, charming and beautiful’ loved one in a moving tribute.
They also spoke of his likely terror as he fought to get back to his home only 250 yards away and flee his alleged attackers.
A family statement said, “In his final moments he must have been terrified. Fighting to get home, he had everything to live for. We now have only memories.”
The family also thanked an off-duty doctor who battled in vain to save his life after he was stabbed to death.
According to the Telegraph, reports have circulated on social media that a Samurai sword was used in the attack.
Thames Valley police, who are leading the investigation, said they were unable to confirm or deny the detail as their enquiries were ongoing.
Following his death, a statement from Olly’s family read, “Last night we have had to face every parents’ worst nightmare. My wife, daughter and I would like to whole heartedly thank the following people.
“A Good Samaritan that tried valiantly to save Oliver, an off duty doctor who also offered her help, all the emergency services that attended the scene at Bugs Bottom, Emmer Green who have been exemplary, the forensic team and all staff that are still on the case, and our families, neighbours, friends and colleagues who have sent their valued love and support.”
The message continued, “Oliver was an enigma, having both Autism and suspected Pathological Demand Avoidance he became a challenge we never shied away from.
“He was hilariously funny, charming and beautiful. He could get his own way with a wry smile and a cheeky grin.
“He always stood his ground and fought for the underdog whilst having an amazing depth of love, warmth and wit.
“In his final moments he must have been terrified. Fighting to get home, he had everything to live for. We now have only memories.
“An Olly sized hole has been left in our hearts. Gentle shoulder charge, love ya mate XXX.”
This week Olly’s headteacher Rachel Cave at Highdown School said staff and students had been left ‘reeling’ by the death of the popular pupil.
In a statement, she said, “For a life to be ended at such a young age is a total tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.
“Many have been deeply affected by this tragedy.”
Olly’s 16-year-old sister Emilia posted on Instagram, “I’m so sorry I failed you, I wish I could have saved you from it all. We will get justice for you my angel.”
Matt Rodda, Labour MP for Reading East, told of his shock at the killing as he attended the scene this week.
He said, “This is a very quiet area, a suburban area on the edge of town and typically on a Sunday afternoon, when the incident happened, you would have a lot of families, people walking their dogs in this country park, a well-known beauty spot which is very quiet and pleasant.”
Meanwhile Police Federation chairman John Apter said of the incident on Twitter: ‘Horrific, so many lives will be shattered by this. Society does indeed need to take a look at itself.’
One man, who declined to give his name, said his wife was walking their dog through the park when she saw a boy on the ground with several people gathered around.
They were trying to give him first aid and the boy’s face was ‘very white’, his wife told him.
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