Brianna Ghey: What we know about death of trans teen as inquest opens
Two teens, a boy and girl both aged 15, have been charged with murder following the death of transgender Brianna, 16, in Warrington, Cheshire.
An inquest into the death of transgender teenager Brianna Ghey has opened and adjourned, as police continue to investigate if it was a hate crime.
Brianna, 16, from Birchwood, Warrington, was found with fatal stab wounds on a path in Culcheth Linear Park on the afternoon of 11 February.
A boy and a girl, both aged 15, have been charged with her murder and are due to go on trial at Liverpool Crown Court on 10 July.
Neither accused can be named because of their age.
During the brief two-minute hearing at Warrington Coroner’s Court on Wednesday, Jacqueline Devonish, senior coroner for Cheshire, opened and adjourned the inquest until after the trial and set a date for a pre-inquest hearing on 17 August.
Detective Inspector Nigel Parr, the senior investigating officer for the incident from Cheshire Police said: “The investigation is a murder investigation and two individuals have been charged with the murder of Brianna.”
He confirmed the teenager was found “unresponsive” by members of the public in the park and paramedics attended and confirmed the date of death.
A post-mortem examination was carried out at the Royal Liverpool Hospital, results of which were given at the hearing On Wednesday.
The hearing, which was not attended by any family member, heard that Brianna’s identity was confirmed by her mother Esther.
Last month, people gathered for candlelit vigils at St George’s Hall in Liverpool and at College Green in Bristol.
Brianna Ghey: Key updates
Stabbing of Brianna may have been a hate crime (The Telegraph)
What is a hate crime? (Yahoo News UK)
Family pay tribute to ‘much-loved daughter’ (The Independent)
Brianna Ghey posted on TikTok hours before death (The Telegraph)
A community torn apart: Tributes flood in for Brianna (Warrington Guardian)
£70,000 raised for family of Brianna (Yahoo News UK)
Brianna Ghey: Family tributes
The family have described Brianna as "fearless" and a "larger-than-life character who would leave a lasting impression on all that met her".
In a statement, the teen's family said: "Brianna was a much-loved daughter, granddaughter, and baby sister.
"She was a larger-than-life character who would leave a lasting impression on all that met her. Brianna was beautiful, witty and hilarious. Brianna was strong, fearless and one of a kind."
The statement continued: "The loss of her young life has left a massive hole in our family, and we know that the teachers and her friends who were involved in her life will feel the same.
"We would like to thank everyone for their kind words and support during this extremely difficult time.
"We would like to thank the police for their support, and witnesses for helping with the investigation.
"The continuation of respect for privacy is greatly appreciated."
Friends and fellow pupils at Brianna's school have left tributes at the park, as well as on social media.
One parent, Damian Harry, whose daughters knew Brianna Ghey, said they had been left "needing to take painkillers for stress" following the fatal stabbing.
Emma Mills, the headteacher at Brianna’s school Birchwood Community High School, said: "We are shocked and truly devastated to hear of the death of Brianna.
"This is understandably a very difficult and distressing time for many and we will do our utmost to support our pupils and wider school community."
Watch: Teenage girl found dead in Cheshire park named as Brianna Ghey
Here is everything we know about Brianna Ghey's death so far:
Where and when was Brianna Ghey killed?
Brianna Ghey, 16, from Birchwood, was found stabbed in Culcheth Linear Park, Warrington at around 3.15pm on Saturday 11 February.
She was found on a path by members of the public.
The emergency services were called but Brianna was pronounced dead at the scene, Cheshire Police said.
What have police said?
Police initially said that the attack on Brianna was "targeted" but that there was no evidence currently to suggest it was a 'hate' crime and linked to her being transgender.
But in a later statement, the force said: “Police investigating the murder of Brianna Ghey have been granted an extension of 30 hours to further question two suspects – a boy and a girl, both aged 15.
“All lines of enquiry are being explored, including whether this was a hate crime.
“Please continue to avoid speculation online and be wary of sharing misinformation relating to this case.”
The two suspects were subsequently charged with Brianna’s murder.
Tributes to Brianna Ghey
As well as the tribute from the teen's family, well-wishers inundated her popular TikTok account, which has more than 31,000 followers, with messages and comments, with one describing the 16-year-old as a "sweet angel".
Messages were posted under videos of the 16-year-old expressing herself, lip-synching to songs and trying on different outfits.
One fan wrote: "Oh you sweet angel. I’m so sorry Brianna, you didn’t deserve this. So beautiful and so young, absolutely heartbreaking. How could anyone do this."
A video posted to Brianna's TikTok account, @gingerpuppyx, on the day she died has so far received more than 8,000 comments.
One said: "So gorgeous. so sad to see people in the world taken too soon, and in the worst ways."
Two friends, Victoria and Jacob Potter, have set up a GoFundMe appeal for Brianna's family. By Monday afternoon the fundraiser had attracted almost £30,000 in donations from wellwishers.
A number of schoolchildren, still in their school uniforms, lay flowers at the police cordon at the entrance to the park on Monday.
Student Jordan Clayton, 19, who had met Brianna and knew her friends, also placed a bunch of roses at the scene.
He said he knew her from school, saying: "I just felt really guilty, felt really bad for her, it must be horrible for her family. I can’t imagine losing a daughter.
"She was really kind and like bubbly and energetic and sweet. She was quite introverted, but when you got to speak to her, she was bubbly and sweet and stuff."
His mother, Sandra Clayton, from Padgate, Warrington, added: “To think what she must have been going through, those last… it’s horrible, knife crime, nothing like that should be happening now. It’s going on too much, isn’t it?
"Just hopefully (they will) find out who has done it and what the reasons were behind it."
Damian Harry, whose daughters knew Brianna, told Sky News: "Brianna was just a beautiful young girl, quite active on social media, similar to my daughters.
"They're both very stressed, disbelief, being sick, needing to take painkillers for stress, so it's quite emotional for everybody."