Get involved: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting 'OXFORD NEWS' to 80360 or email
Police appeal over bus stab girl
Detectives investigating the fatal stabbing of a 16-year-old schoolgirl on a bus have issued a picture of the suspect as they appealed for witnesses to come forward.
The man, described as a black male in his early 20s who was wearing a distinctive "tiger" jacket, is believed to have been on buses in and around the Birmingham area around the time Christina Edkins was fatally stabbed on a double-decker in Hagley Road in the city on Thursday.
Post-mortem tests have revealed that the teenager died from a single stab wound to the chest following the attack on the number 9 bus during the morning rush-hour.
Police have urged anyone who saw the man, who was also carrying a white bag, between 6am and 1pm on Thursday, to contact them. They have also appealed for any passengers who were travelling on the bus who they have not yet spoken to yet to contact them. Sixteen people are believed to have been travelling on the bus when the stabbing happened, but only half have so far spoken to police.
A 22-year-old man arrested near the scene on Thursday is continuing to be questioned by detectives on suspicion of murder. Police are not looking for anyone else in connection with the stabbing. Detectives have been given a further 12 hours to question the man in custody, police said.
Detective Superintendent Richard Baker, of West Midlands Police, said: "We know there are a number of passengers who were on the bus yesterday morning when Christina was attacked while she was sitting upstairs. Some of these passengers were sitting downstairs on the bus and they haven't yet spoken to police. They may not even have known what happened but may have vital evidence, and it is crucial they contact us as soon as possible on 101."
The force released a picture of the distinctive jacket that the suspected killer was wearing. Mr Baker said: "We strongly believe now that the male got off the bus after the incident and has then continued to use the bus network in and around the wider Birmingham and West Midlands area to continue travelling for a number of hours after the tragic event yesterday.
"Again I would ask anybody who believes they have seen this male wearing the top that we've released to please call the dedicated number. Tell us what you saw, and where you think you saw him. We are trying to piece together the movements of this male before and after the incident."
He said Christina's family was "absolutely devastated" by the "totally senseless and random" attack. He added: "The dedicated officers in the investigation team are working hard now to make sure the person responsible for this is brought to justice, and we will continue to work closely with the Crown Prosecution Service over the coming hours in order to make that happen."
Mr Baker said that Christina got on to the bus after her attacker and went and sat in front of him on the top deck. As the bus was stopping, he stabbed her, walked down stairs, waited for the bus to stop and got off. The suspect, a British national with links to Walsall, is not known to mental health units in the area and has no known link to the teenager. It was part of Christina's regular daily routine to get the bus at that time.