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Judge names teen killers after daily’s anti-knife campaign

A judge has granted journalists the right to name two teenage killers after being influenced by a regional daily’s campaign.

Mrs Justice Farbey referenced ‘Bin The Knife, Save a Life’, an anti-knife campaign by the Huddersfield Daily Examiner and its Reach plc sister website Yorkshire Live, as she jailed Jovani Harriott and Jakele Pusey for the murder of 15-year-old Khayri McLean.

The BBC and PA reporter Dave Higgens had applied for the anonymity orders preventing the identification of Pusey and Harriott to be lifted, supported by the Examiner, Daily Mail, ITV and Bauer Radio.

Their joint submission cited the “widespread public concern” about knife crime among young people and the work of the Examiner and Yorkshire Live in getting authorities in Huddersfield and beyond to back the campaign.

Hudders jailed

The submission read: “It is clear there is widespread public concern about violent knife crime among teenagers.

“This is on a national level but we would also argue that there is a particular concern in Huddersfield where this incident is one of a series in the town in recent months.

“Yorkshire Live is currently working with authorities on an anti-crime campaign and this has stressed that in the last six months three teenagers in the town have died as a result of knife crime.

“With the last point in mind, we say it is in the public interest to identify the defendants because naming perpetrators clearly aids deterrence.”

The judge quoted this part of the submission when she referenced Yorkshire Live’s campaign as she delivered her decision on the reporting restrictions.

The Examiner launched its campaign in March following the knife-related deaths of both Khayri and 17-year-old Harley Brown.

Sentencing 17-year-old Harriott, and 15-year-old Pusey, Mrs Justice Farbey told Leeds Crown Court: “Khayri was murdered, aged 15, in a public street near a school at the end of the school day when schoolchildren came teeming out.

“There is a strong public interest in the full reporting of a murder so close to a school.”

The judge added the murder may have been “gang related” or due to “revenge” in relation to allegations a window had been smashed at the home of the Harriott’s mother.

Khayri’s family and friends, who wore T-shirts emblazoned with his photograph in court, applauded when the judge lifted the order. Harriott must service at least 18 years and Pusey a minimum of 16.

Yorkshire Live’s West Yorkshire court reporter Sophie Corcoran told HTFP: “Knife crime is something that in the last year has blighted, and continues to affect Huddersfield.

“In her [victim impact] statement, Khayri’s mum referenced knife crime and made a plea to get knives off the street. As well as noting recent cases where youths had been identified we wanted to drive home to the judge the evidence of how knife crime impacts our local area and the people living in it and why the youths who had stabbed and killed Khayri should be named.

“It was a long day where the restriction was not lifted until close to 5pm when both defendants had been sentenced so we were not sure it was going to happen, but thankfully it did.

“Three lives have essentially been taken because of this crime – Khayri’s and the two boys who will now have to serve a sentence for the rest of their lives.

“The communities they have lived in and their families have been impacted greatly as a result of this serious crime.

“I believe the judge allowing to press to name the defendants will help to deter others from picking up the knife, something which will help our campaign grow and get knives off the streets.”