A TEENAGE boy has been charged with murder after a girl was knifed to death while "trying to protect her pal".
Elianne Andam, 15, died after she was stabbed in Croydon while intervening in a row between a pal and her ex-boyfriend on the No60 double-decker bus.
The teenager, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has now been charged with murder and possession of a knife.
He will appear at Croydon Magistrates' Court today.
On Thursday, 28 September, police recovered a knife in Cedar Road, Croydon.
Last night, Elianne's devastated mum Dorcas Andam visited the bus stop where her daughter had been killed.
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Weeping relatives were seen emotionally embracing with their arms wrapped around one another.
The group were joined at the scene by the leader of a local church, as well as James Watkins, the leader of the Mainzworld community group.
Standing alongside Elianne's friends and family, Bishop of Croydon Rosemarie Mallett said: "I am here to make a statement on behalf of the family written by the family.
"We, as a family are struggling to comprehend this painful tragedy that has happened to our beautiful daughter and beloved sister Elianne.
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"Our hearts are broken. And we are overwhelmed by sorrow and grief our faith in the Lord is strengthening us.
"We would like to express our gratitude to those who have taken the time to send us thoughtful and compassionate messages and prayers.
"We kindly ask for your consideration to also respect our need for privacy as we attempt to come to grips with our deeply devastating loss.
"Elianne was a beautiful person inside and out who loved Jesus.
"She was intelligent, thoughtful, kind and had a bright future ahead of her."
They left at least five bouquets of flowers before hugging and returning to cars and a minivan which brought them from the family home less than half a mile away.
TEARS FOR ELIANNE
Elianne was a pupil at Old Palace of John Whitgift School, with the private school paying tribute to the "valued friend and pupil".
Security worker Victor Asare described how members of the public rushed to help after the girl was attacked.
He said: "A lot of people came, everyone came off the bus.
"(The suspect) ran away. Everybody was crying and screaming. The girl was on the floor.
"We tried to catch him and a lot of people tried to save the girl. I was so shocked, I was shaken. It's somebody's daughter.
"I finished work but couldn't sleep, so came back, I wanted to see if the girl was OK."
Emergency services were called to Wellesley Road at around 8.30am but the girl was pronounced dead at the scene 50 minutes later.
A bus driver and a passer-by were seen desperately trying to save the girl before emergency services arrived, with police at the scene within two minutes.
She said two other schoolgirls, believed to be the victim's friends, were trying to get through the police cordon but were held back.
Anthony King, chairman of My Ends – a project helping combat youth violence in Croydon, was with the girl's family after the incident and said they were "heartbroken".
He added: "She had a bright future ahead of her. She was in her GCSE year."
Mr King described the girl as an "absolutely incredible young lady" and told of how others said she was "jovial, very comedic".
Her school said in a statement: "We are deeply shocked by the senseless and tragic death of our much-loved and valued friend and pupil.
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"It will take some time for the Old Palace community to come to terms with this terrible news, and we will offer support to our pupils as we try to do so.
"Above all, we send our love and deepest sympathies to the girl's family at this unimaginably distressing time."
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