Three schoolchildren – including a 13-year-old girl – appeared in court today charged with the knife murder of 13-year-old Oliver Stephens.
The youngster was found in a field in Emmer Green, near Reading, Berks, at around 4pm on Sunday.
The victim, known to friends and family as Olly, was pronounced dead at the scene in Bugs Bottom Fields.
Today two boys, aged 13 and 14, and a 13-year-old girl appeared at Reading Magistrates’ Court to face charges of murder and conspiracy to commit GBH.
The girl is also charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
The court heard how she allegedly deleted information from her mobile phone and encouraged others to delete information from their mobile phones too.
Reading the charge, the court’s legal advisor said: “A matter that on January 3, with intent to pervert the course of justice, namely deleted information from your mobile phone and encouraged others to delete information from their mobile phones.”
The three accused, none of whom can be named for legal reasons, appeared separately and spoke only to confirm their names, addresses, and dates of birth.
The girl and one boy were accompanied by their mothers.
All three teenagers were remanded into youth detention accommodation until a bail hearing at Reading Crown Court this afternoon.
The trio were also warned that their charges are so serious they would carry a sentence of 14 years behind bars if they were adults.
Members of the press sat in a separate court room and listened in to the hearing via a video link, but the youths were not visible on the screen.