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Man arrested over fatal bus stabbing

CRIME SCENE: The bus stop where the stabbing took place

A MAN has been arrested in Birmingham over the fatal stabbing of a 16-year-old girl on a rush-hour bus as she was making her way to school in Halesowen this morning.

Christina Edkins was attacked shortly after she boarded a number 9 bus on the busy Hagley Road commuter route at 7.40am.

West Midlands Police said they arrested a man a short while ago near Morrison’s supermarket in Hagley Road, just yards from the scene of the murder.

Officers spotted a man acting suspiciously who answered the description of a suspect they had released details of earlier. Following a short chase on foot the 22-year-old man was arrested and held on suspicion of murder.

Detectives from the forces Criminal Investigation Department are continuing to work alongside specialist Forensic Scene Investigators at the scene to identify CCTV systems that may have captured the incident on camera.

Detective Superintendent Richard Baker, from Force CID, said: “This is a tragic case and the victim’s family are devastated.

“We are still anxious to hear from anyone with information or who may have witnessed the incident this morning to speak to us via the dedicated hotline: 0800 096 0095.

VICTIM: Christina Edkins was fatally stabbed

“There will be a high police presence across the city this afternoon following this morning’s tragedy, particularly on buses and in schools in the area to provide reassurance to local people.”

Christina was described as ‘a bright and popular student’ at Leasowes High School.

Her headteacher Neil Shaw said: “Christina was a popular student much loved by staff and students alike. We are deeply saddened to hear this tragic news and our thoughts and hearts go out to her family and everyone who knew her,

“The school is working closely with the police and a team of counsellors to provide support to our pupils and staff.”

The incident brought the city centre to a standstill this morning, causing five-mile tailbacks in all directions close to Five Ways Island. The busy A456 road was re-opened four hours later.

People who may have information but do not wish to talk to police officers can call in confidence and anonymously Crimestoppers, the independent charity on 0800 555 111.

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