Friday 30 September 2016

Boy (16) charged in connection with death of Bailey Gwynne who was fatally stabbed at an Aberdeen school

Published 29/10/2015 | 15:58

Bailey Gwynne, 16, who died after being stabbed by another teenager at Cults Academy in Aberdeen. Photo: Facebook/PA Wire
Bailey Gwynne, 16, who died after being stabbed by another teenager at Cults Academy in Aberdeen. Photo: Facebook/PA Wire

A 16-year-old boy has been charged in connection with the death of Bailey Gwynne, who was fatally stabbed at an Aberdeen secondary school.

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Bailey, also 16, suffered serious injuries in an incident at Cults Academy, in the west of the city, at about 1.30pm on Wednesday.

He died a short time later at the city's Royal Infirmary, sparking a murder investigation.

Police Scotland today confirmed that a 16-year-old male has been "charged in relation to the death" of the schoolboy.

He is expected to appear at Aberdeen Sheriff Court on Friday.

The comprehensive school is in an affluent suburb of Aberdeen and serves the lower Deeside area. It has more than 1,000 pupils.

Following the incident, Aberdeen City Council chief executive Angela Scott said on her blog to staff: "I know that there were individual acts of heroism at the school yesterday and I fully appreciate that there were sights and experiences for many that you simply do not expect to have to face."

She said measures were being put in place to make sure pupils, parents and staff are given the support they need following the incident.

Head teacher Anna Muirhead has described Bailey as "gentle and caring", and told of the shock within the school community following his death.

Counselling is being made available to pupils and staff at the school, which has been closed for the rest of the week, and a dedicated phoneline has been set up for those affected on 01224 264299.

A candle-lit vigil will be held on Thursday night at Cults Parish Church, North Deeside Road.

At First Minister's Questions earlier, Nicola Sturgeon said the thoughts of MSPs at Holyrood were with Bailey's loved ones and those affected by the death.

She also stressed that such incidents are ''extremely rare in our schools'', and pledged the Scottish Government would make sure any lessons which need to be learned are learned.

A large police presence remains at Cults Academy, and dozens of floral tributes have been left at the school gates.

One handwritten message left among the flowers read: "Bailey, forever in our hearts. My thoughts are with your family at this tragic time and with my fellow students who have shock and despair at you leaving us."

One friend told how Bailey enjoyed going to the gym and said he thought he had plans to join the Marines.

People connected with the school have also taken to social media to pay tribute to the teenager.

Scotland's public health minister Maureen Watt, who is also a local MSP, told BBC Radio Scotland earlier: "It's a very isolated incident but I'm sure reviews will take place as a result of this."

Police Scotland Chief Superintendent Adrian Watson said evidence suggests it was a "contained incident" at the school with no-one else being sought.

He told a press conference in Aberdeen: "In nigh-on 30 years in the police service as a senior investigating officer and for the past six years as commander for Aberdeen, you think that you have seen it all until you learn of yesterday's tragic events."

Sending his condolences to the schoolboy's family and friends, he added: "I know full well this will be deeply felt not only in the Cults area but across Aberdeen, and of course further afield."

The officer went on: "I can confirm we have charged a 16-year-old male in connection with the incident and he will be appearing at Aberdeen Sheriff Court tomorrow.

"I need to stress that all the evidence gathered to date suggests that this is a contained incident and we are not looking for anyone else."

Aberdeen City Council leader Jenny Laing told the press conference: "The loss of a young life so full of potential is always a great tragedy but these circumstances are particularly distressing as it occurred in a place of learning, friendship and community.

"When you send your children to school you expect them to be in a place of safety and in a place where they will be equipped for their life ahead. That opportunity has been denied to Bailey."

She said the loss of life "represents a unique set of circumstances and is extremely rare, if not unheard of, in our city and its schools".

Ms Laing added: "For this tragedy to take place in one of the safest cities in Scotland is, of course, a terrible irony and means that we feel the pain of Bailey's family as one big extended community.

"We will not allow this tragedy to deflect us from supporting our young people as they make their way in the world."

It was also confirmed there will be a series of assemblies held at the school on Monday for pupils.

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