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Teenager sentenced to life for murder of 12-year-old Ava White

A teenager has been sentenced to a minimum sentence of 13 years for the murder of 12-year-old Ava White.

The 15-year-old was sentenced to life on Monday for the fatal stabbing that occurred in Liverpool city center on November 25 last year.

Speaking at Liverpool Crown Court, Ava’s mother Leanne said: ‘My beloved Ava dies again every morning I wake up.

“My Ava dies again every moment she is not with us for the rest of our lives.”

The defendant, appearing via video link, covered his face with his hand as Ms White and her eldest daughter Mia, 18, tearfully addressed the court, where more than 20 family members and friends of Ava were in the public gallery.

A teenager has been convicted of killing Ava (Merseyside Police/PA) (PA Media)

Mia said, “I am a shadow of my loving former big sister Ava.”

She said she looked forward to passing groups of young people on the street in case they were carrying knives and now hoped to change other young people’s minds about using knives.

The defendant, who was 14 at the time of Ava’s death, stabbed the schoolgirl in the neck following an argument over a Snapchat video.

He claimed he accidentally stabbed her in self-defense, but a jury found him guilty of murder following a two-week trial in May.

The court heard the boy, who suffered from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and attended a special school, had previously been served with a community resolution notice after hitting a PCSO in July last.

At the time of Ava’s death, the boy was charged with other offenses which have yet to be resolved, the court was told, and had come to the attention of authorities due to fears that it is exploited by older and more criminally sophisticated people.

Nick Johnson QC, defending, said the defendant carried the knife because he had already been the victim of a crime.

Referring to a pre-sentence report on the defendant, Mr Johnson said: ‘One of the things that stands out is the suggestion that as part of his background he had been desensitized to violence, and that is not as a perpetrator of violence.”

The court heard that Ava and her friends were involved in an argument with the defendant and three of his friends after the boys recorded Snapchat videos of the group.

Friends of Ava said the boy ‘smiled’ after he stabbed her in School Lane just after 8.30pm.

The knife used to stab Ava, 12 (CPS/PA) (PA Media)

The knife used to stab Ava, 12 (CPS/PA) (PA Media)

The court heard that after Ava was punched in the neck, the defendant fled, threw away his knife and took off his coat, which was later found in a wheelie bin.

CCTV showed him and his friends at a store where the accused took a selfie and the group bought butter, which he said was for crumpets.

He then went to a friend’s house and when his mother contacted him because the police wanted to talk to him, he told her he was playing a video game.

After his arrest just after 10:30 p.m. he initially told police he had not been downtown, but in later interviews he accused another boy of being stabbed.

Media requests for the lifting of restrictions on the identity of the accused were rejected by the judge.