UK & World News

  • 29 April 2014, 10:38

Teacher Stabbing: Pupil Remains In Custody

Police are continuing to question a 15-year-old boy after a popular teacher was stabbed to death during a lesson at a school in Leeds.

Pupils and staff have been paying tribute to Spanish teacher Anne Maguire, 61, who was fatally injured at Corpus Christi Catholic College.

And she has been remembered at a service in the neighbouring Corpus Christi Church.

Monsignor Paul Fisher said: "Today we pray for the light of hope: hope for ourselves that eventually we will come to terms with what has happened.

"We offer prayer too for the family of the man who unfortunately did what he did."

It came after hundreds crammed into the pews of the church on Monday night to pay their respects to Mrs Maguire, who had taught at the school for more than 40 years.

Teenagers hugged each other and some lit candles as they wiped away tears.

Outside, scores more gathered around hundreds of floral tributes placed at the school gates.

Photographs, teddies and other items of memorabilia have been pinned to the railings.

The school opened on Tuesday to allow staff and students to remember Mrs Maguire and support each other.

Monsignor John Wilson of Leeds Diocese told Sky News: "I know that there are plans during the day today in school for staff to get together and also for pupils to get together for acts of remembrance, and for them to get together and just support each other at this terrible time."

Officers were called to the school just before noon on Monday after a report a member of staff had been stabbed. A knife was recovered from the scene.

Around 30 pupils witnessed Mrs Maguire, who is believed have two grown-up daughters, being stabbed repeatedly in class.

Some reported hearing screams as other members of staff rushed to her classroom and restrained her attacker.

Her death is the first time a teacher has been stabbed to death in a British classroom.

Head teacher Philip Lawrence was murdered outside a school in Maida Vale, London, in 1995 when he went to help a pupil who was being attacked.

A recent Sky News investigation revealed almost 1,000 pupils were caught with weapons including guns, axes and a meat cleaver in schools in the last three years.

A delegation of officials from Leeds City Council arrived at the school, saying they were there to offer whatever support was necessary.

Tom Riordon, the authority's chief executive, said: "We're here to pay our respects to a wonderful teacher on behalf of the members and officers of Leeds City Council.

"We're about to go in and see people in the school and show our support."

Cllr Judith Blake, the council's executive member for children's services, said she supported the school's decision to open.

She said: "At a time like this people ned to come together.

"It's that support they will get from coming in today that will help them through such a difficult time."

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