TWO teens are facing trial over the "extremely brutal and punishing" murder of a transgender schoolgirl.
Brianna Ghey, 16, was stabbed to death in Linear Park, Culcheth, Warrington, at around 3.13pm on Saturday.
A boy and a girl, both 15, appeared at Liverpool Crown Court today via separate video links charged with murder.
The pair, who can't be named, remained emotionless during the short hearing.
No pleas were entered but a provisional trial date was set for July 10.
They were remanded into youth detention to next appear at the same court on May 2.
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The girl's parents and boy's mum appeared tearful as they watched proceedings from the public gallery.
At a previous court hearing, prosecutor Leanne Gallagher said Brianna's death was "extremely brutal and punishing".
Police were scrambled to the park after Brianna was found with serious injuries.
Detective Chief Supt Mike Evans of Cheshire Police described the killing as a “targeted attack” on Brianna during a “busy day” at the park.
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Cheshire Police are now investigating whether the teen was attacked as part of a transphobic hate crime.
Vigils were held across the country last night as the trans community came together to remember Brianna.
Mourners gathered outside the Department of Education building in London, City Hall in Belfast, Dalton Square in Lancaster, and on O'Connell Street in Dublin.
They held trans and trans and LGBTQ+ pride flags, candles and banners telling Brianna to "rest in pride".
In a tribute, the schoolgirl's family said Brianna was a "much-loved daughter, granddaughter, and baby sister".
The statement continued: "She was a larger-than-life character who would leave a lasting impression on all that met her.
"Brianna was beautiful, witty and hilarious.
"Brianna was strong, fearless and one of a kind.
"The loss of her young life has left a massive hole in our family, and we know that the teachers and her friends who were involved in her life will feel the same."
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