THE mother of Brianna Ghey, who was killed in Culcheth in February, delivered a powerful statement outside Manchester Crown Court this afternoon.

Two 16-year-olds - who cannot be named due to their age - were found guilty by unanimous verdict today, December 20.

Speaking after the jury delivered its verdict, Esther Ghey said: "Brianna was larger than life. She was funny, witty, and fearless. We miss Brianna so much and our house feels empty without her laughter.

"To now know how scared my usually fearless child must have been when she was alone in the park with someone that she called her friend will haunt me forever.

"Prior to the trial, I have had moments where I felt sorry for the defendants because they have ruined their own lives as well as ours.

"But now knowing the true nature of the two and seeing neither display an ounce of remorse for what they have done to Brianna, I have lost any sympathy that I previously had for them, and I am glad that they will spend many years in prison and away from society."

Warrington Guardian: Esther paid tribute to her daughter on the steps of Manchester Crown CourtEsther paid tribute to her daughter on the steps of Manchester Crown Court (Image: Esther Ghey)

Esther continued: "I would like to take this opportunity to give my thanks to all involved in the outcome we have today.

"Thank you to Cheshire Police and the CPS for all the hard work that has gone into building this case following a thorough investigation led by DCI Adam Waller and DI Nige Parr.

"Thank you to our family liaison officers DC Sarah Newton and DC Linda Turtle for supporting us throughout the investigation and trial with such professionalism and kindness.

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"Thank you to Justice Yip for ensuring a fair trial has been carried out for all.

"Thank you to the prosecution Deanna Heer KC and her team for all their hard work throughout and for advocating for Brianna in such an outstanding way.

"Thank you to the jury for making the right decision based on the evidence. I understand how difficult this must have been for you all, but you have worked hard and thanks to you, society is now a safer place.

"Thank you to all of those who gave evidence. With special thanks to the couple who found Brianna and PC Chadwick, the first officer on the scene.

"I am so grateful that in the last moments of her life, she had the concern and kindness from you all and I undoubtedly know that you did all you could to help my precious child.

"Thank you also to the majority of the press who have reported sensitively throughout. This has meant a lot to our family and Brianna's friends."

Esther concluded: "Lastly, please have some empathy and compassion for the families of the young people convicted of this horrific crime.

"They too have lost a child and must live the rest of their lives knowing what their child has done.

"My family and I request some healing space for the next few weeks.

"However, I will be back at the end of January to continue my campaigning for better mental health support for young people and their families.

"Thank you."