WILLIAM Blencowe appeared in court yesterday charged with stabbing teenager Connor Tremble to death.
The 20-year-old accused of the murder was remanded in custody yesterday morning, hours before Connor’s friends gathered outside the flat where he was stabbed in Fairacres Road, Oxford.
There they listened to the music the 17-year-old loved and by 8pm more than 20 of Connor’s friends had turned out for a tribute rap performance in his memory and lit candles in the shape of a heart.
Flowers placed at the scene of the stabbing in Fairacres Road
Monat Steele, 16, from Cowley, said: “Connor always wanted to make people feel better about themselves – I didn’t ever see him sad.
“I still can’t believe this has happened. We all know Connor would not have wanted us to be upset – it’s so unfair he didn’t even make it to 18.”
Kenza Lamptey, 19, from Kidlington, said she had known Connor since he was 12. She added: “He was really bubbly and outgoing and always looked after other people before himself.”
On Sunday, mourners from Oxford and Banbury let off balloons and lanterns in memory of the teen at Spiceball Park, Banbury.
Close friend Shelby Delaney, 18, told the Oxford Mail: “He was bubbly and lovable. I still expect him to come up behind me and give me a hug.”
Connor was found with stab wounds in his chest, legs and hands, and he died at the John Radcliffe Hospital on Saturday.
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Blencowe, of Oxford Road in Banbury, was remanded in custody after his appearance at Oxford Magistrates’ Court and is due to appear at Reading Crown Court today.
William Blencowe, accused of the murder of Connor Tremble, arrives at Oxford Magistrates’ Court yesterday.
As he was taken into custody he made a fist, which he kissed, and gestured towards onlookers in the court.
Yesterday Oxfordshire County Council pledged a “thorough investigation” into the death of the teenager.
Connor had been in the care of the authority since December 2012 and lived in accommodation for 16 and 17-year-olds preparing to leave council care. The flat was provided by Key2 on behalf of the council.
His death comes after 17-year-old Jayden Parkinson – who was living at a nearby council-funded hostel in Iffley Road – was killed in December. The authority’s care of youngsters was also brought into question last year when seven men were jailed for grooming and sexually abusing girls in council care homes from 2004 to 2012.
Marilyn Hawes, from campaign group Enough Abuse UK, said the council was failing in its duty of care.
She said: “Somebody is not doing their job properly.
“When you have their remit of care over children you should be going the extra mile as if it was your own child.”
Council spokesman Owen Morton responded by saying: “There will be a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding this tragic death so that any lessons for the future can be learned.”