Teenager in court charged with murder of Katie Rough, 7, in York

A TEENAGER has been remanded into secure accommodation after being charged with the murder of seven-year-old Katie Rough.

The 15-year-old girl appeared before magistrates in York where she said nothing as lawyers briefly summarised the circumstances around the death of Katie in the city on Monday.

Katie Rough.  Picture: Ross Parry Agency

Katie Rough. Picture: Ross Parry Agency

The youngster was found in a field with severe lacerations to her neck and chest and died in hospital.

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The defendant, who cannot be named, stood looking straight forward throughout the eight-minute hearing at York Magistrates’ Court.

She was joined in the glass-fronted dock by two security guards and a youth offending team manager.

The grandparents of Katie Rough outside York Magistrates Court where a teenager is due to appear charged with the murder of the seven-year-old

The grandparents of Katie Rough outside York Magistrates Court where a teenager is due to appear charged with the murder of the seven-year-old

The girl, who who was wearing an oversized grey sweatshirt and has long brown hair, did not answer when asked her name, and her solicitor, Colin Byrne, answered questions about her identity on her behalf.

Members of her family sat on one side of the large Victorian courtroom out of sight of a large number of reporters on the other side.

Katie’s grandparents were in court but it is not thought that her parents attended.

Chairman of the bench Brian Wood remanded the girl into secure accommodation and said the case would be heard by a judge at Leeds Crown Court on Friday.

Police activity outside a property in the Woodthorpe area. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA

Police activity outside a property in the Woodthorpe area. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA

The defendant is charged with murder and possession of an offensive weapon - a knife.

Witnesses said Katie’s mother, named locally as Alison Rough, fell to her knees in the street, crying and pleading for help after her daughter was injured.

Tracey Ralph, head teacher at Westfield Primary School where Katie was a pupil, paid tribute to the “kind and thoughtful child” who was well-liked by pupils and staff.

Ms Ralph said: “She was hard-working and showed a particular talent for creative writing.

“Her death is a terrible loss which has deeply saddened our school community and we send our profound sympathies to her family.”

The scene, in Alness Drive, York, remained cordoned off on Wednesday, with police officers continuing with investigations.

Dozens of bunches of flowers have been left along the alley which leads from the quiet residential street to the field where Katie was found.

Candles and teddy bears were also among the tributes.

One message on the flowers said: “Rest in peace little angel.

“What a cruel way to take you.

“Thoughts to family and friends.”

Speaking in the House of Commons, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “I’m sure the whole House will join in heartfelt condolences to the family and friends (following) the tragic death of seven-year-old Katie Rough in York earlier this week.

“I think it’s right we send condolences to her family.”

Prime Minister Theresa May said: “I also join you in expressing condolences to the family and friends of little Katie, who died so tragically.”