Manchester court sentences teens to life for premeditated murder of transgender woman
The murder, which shocked the United Kingdom, occurred in February, near Warrington in north-western England. Fifteen-year-olds Scarlett Jenkinson and Eddie Ratcliffe, who were acquainted with Brianna Ghey, lured her to a park and stabbed her 28 times with a hunting knife, hitting the head, neck, chest, and back.
The murder was premeditated. As emphasized by the judge during the verdict, both teenagers exhibited a fascination with violence, torture, and cruelty. In the days leading up to Ghey’s murder, they even exchanged messages discussing their plans.
The judge noted that Jenkinson was primarily driven by a deep-seated urge to kill, whereas, Ratcliffe was partially motivated by his hostility towards Ghey's transgender identity.
No leniency for the teen murderers
Jenkinson and Ratcliffe were sentenced to life imprisonment. Jenkinson is eligible to apply for parole no earlier than 22 years into her sentence, and Ratcliffe after 20 years. Jenkinson received a marginally higher penalty as she was noted as the main initiator of the murder plan.
The judge, however, clarified that it is uncertain if they will ever be released. It will solely depend on the parole board's assessment of whether the individuals no longer pose a threat to society after the respective periods.
The court also elected to disclose the identities and images of both convicts, an unusual course of action for minors in the United Kingdom. Both individuals remained impassive during the sentencing proceedings.