Olly Stephens murder: teenagers responsible get life sentences

Three teenagers indicted for the murder of 13-year-old Olly Stephens, over a social media row, have been sentenced.

One of them, a girl, lured Olly Stephens to a field in Reading, Berkshire, where the other two were lying in wait, and they stabbed him to death.

The other two were boys aged 14, and they were found guilty of murder following a trial at Reading Crown Court. They both got life sentences, meaning they will serve minimum terms of 12 and 13 years respectively.

While the girl, also 14, who admitted to manslaughter, was sentenced to three years and two months.

Olly’s teenage murderers revealed to the trial that they believed he “grassed” on them to the brother of a boy they had mocked in a social media group chat.

Grass is a British slang, which means to tell the police or someone older about the criminal activity of (someone).

The jury was presented with voice notes and text messages where the boys talked about taking revenge On Olly Stephens for grassing them

“He’s actually getting banged when I see him,” one message said.

Another added: “I actually hate the kid with a passion, like if I was to see him right now I’ll probably end up killing him or something.”

The girl was recruited to lure Olly to Bugs Bottom fields, near his home in Emmer Green, as part of a “set-up”.

Related article: Gabby Petito Update: body found during search, boyfriend now missing.

The court, still listening to the messages, heard when the guilty parties suggested killing the victim, saying that he deserved what was coming and describing it as “karma”

They stabbed Olly twice; one blade penetrated 17cm (6.5in) into his back, and another, his chest, about 9cm (3.5in) deep.

Judge Heather Norton told the three teenagers, while passing the sentence:

“Whatever part each of you played – great or small – what you did that day was utterly cruel and totally pointless.

“You have taken one life, damaged your own futures and you have caused so much pain to so many people. The effects of what you did will stay with you and with Olly’s family forever.”

The judge added that the sentences may seem “unbearably short” to Olly’s family, but “unbearably long” for the defendants.

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