Ava White’s family cried in court today as they watched CCTV footage of the moment the schoolgirl was killed at a Christmas lights switch-on.
The 12-year-old was stabbed in the neck after ‘hanging out’ with a group of girls hours after the event in Liverpool city centre on November 25 last year.
A 14-year-old boy charged with her murder, who can only be named as Boy A for legal reasons, is said to have pulled out a ‘flick knife’ before launching the attack.
He then allegedly smirked, laughed and ran away, then began a ‘cover up’ by discarding his blade, designer coat and mobile phone.
The prosecution have told Liverpool Crown Court that Boy A accepts responsibility for the stabbing, but states he acted in self-defence.
Ava White was stabbed in the neck after ‘hanging out’ with a group of girls hours after the event in Liverpool city centre on November 25 last year
Police conduct a search near the scene in Liverpool city centre where 12-year-old Ava White died following an assault last year
His trial continued this morning with the playing of CCTV footage of the build-up to the incident.
Prosecutors have said Ava argued with Boy A after he and his group of friends filmed her ‘messing around’ with her group of friends. He later shared the video on Snapchat.
Police staff investigator Callum Suggit told the jury Ava and her friends were in Williamson Square at around 8.15pm.
Footage played in court showed her running with one boy around a Christmas tree and some of her friends swinging plants around.
Charlotte Newell, QC, prosecuting, has said the two groups met by chance. Boy A and his friends, Boys B to D, walked up Richmond Street and encountered Ava’s group at around 8.22pm.
The jury saw a clip of Boy A’s group walking past Ava as she was lying on the ground in the middle of Richmond Street, near Paolo & Donato’s Deli.
Boy A and his friend Boy C could be seen to turn back with the phones held up, apparently filming.
Mr Suggit said Boy A recorded Ava on Snapchat. An officer was later able to film the video on another child’s phone, which was shown to the jury.
He said ‘altercations’ could then be seen between Ava and members of Boy A’s group.
Ms Newell said at one stage Ava could be seen trying to grab Boy C’s phone before both groups walked along Tarleton Street in the direction of Church Street, with Boy A walking backwards, facing Ava.
CCTV showed Ava lying on the ground again in Church Street, as Boy A – walking backwards – and his group headed towards Church Alley at the side of Primark. Ava and another girl were then shown to run across the street.
Mr Suggit said both groups walked up Church Alley towards School Lane and The Bluecoat.
Prosecutors have said Ava argued with Boy A after he and his group of friends filmed her ‘messing around’ with her group of friends
CCTV footage from a camera at Lush was played in court, from which audio could be heard of raised voices.
High Court judge Mrs Justice Amanda Yip said if anyone wanted to leave court they could, before footage from School Lane, at around 20.35 and 35 seconds, was played four times – twice at normal speed and twice slowed down.
Ms Newell said: ‘The CCTV shows Ava pushing Boy A.’ Mr Suggit replied: ‘It does.’
The QC said the clip showed Ava stood in front of Boy A, who had his right arm raised. She said an enlarged still from the footage showed ‘a reflective item’ in his right hand.
Friends and relatives carry Ava’s coffin, decorated with pictures of her and her family, at her funeral in Liverpool on November 25
The jury heard CCTV showed him with his right hand in front of his body, Ava’s right arm move towards him, then Boy A’s right arm move up and away from Ava, then the schoolgirl move towards his position.
Ms Newell said again a reflective item could be seen in his right hand.
The prosecutor said: ‘Microseconds later, parts of a second later, because it’s still 20.35.39, Boy A is moving backwards around the edge of the group.
‘A combined group of his friends and her friends, Boy A moving backwards around the edge of the group, with Ava following him.’
She said Boy A continued to move backwards around the edge of the group as his right arm was shown in front of him towards Ava and she ‘with her arms outstretched’ in his direction.
At 20.35 and 43 seconds, the prosecutor said Boy A was shown running away.
Ms Newell said: ‘So is it apparent in that second or two, that’s when Ava has received her injury?’ Mr Suggit replied: ‘It is.’
The court heard Boy A continued to run away towards Hanover Street as two of Ava’s friends briefly gave chase, but then returned to their injured friend.
Members of Ava’s family sobbed as an image was shown of her standing in School Lane, with her hand held to her neck.
The court was shown a picture of the knife allegedly used to stab Ava, which was later found discarded, and of the coat worn by the defendant, which was discovered in a wheelie bin.
Boy A, from South Liverpool, denies the schoolgirl’s murder and manslaughter.