A Wollongong man has been charged after a 16-year-old boy was stabbed to death at a home at Wagga Wagga in southern New South Wales.
The community is mourning the death of a “gentle, warm-hearted” teenage boy who was allegedly murdered by a relative’s estranged boyfriend on Tuesday night.
Residents on Acacia Street, Kooringal heard commotion around 8pm and called Triple-0.
Emergency services arrived at the scene shortly after to discover the Kooringal High student had died from multiple stab wounds.
The man accused of stabbing the 16-year-old, Bryce Cliff, was charged with murder, aggravated break and enter and take and drive conveyance.
Fairfax Media understands Cliff had previously been in a relationship with the teenager’s half-sister.
A reason for the dispute still remains unclear.
The year 11 student, who previously played cricket for Lake Albert and was a member of the school SRC, has been remembered as a “quiet, well mannered and nice boy”.
Jacie Cockburn, a mother whose son was close friends with the victim, told The Daily Advertiser of her heart-break and anger following the stabbing.
“My son is devastated and extremely shaken up, I think everyone is shocked and upset,” she said.
“I didn’t know the boy well, but he had come to the house for my son’s birthday party and he seemed like a quiet, great kid.
“It’s horrific and heart-wrenching to hear, he wouldn’t hurt a fly”.
Students at Kooringal High School were also offered counselling on Wednesday as they grappled with the teenager’s death.
“Hoping you’re up there shredding man,” classmate Ebony-Rose Keogh said.
“We all love you and miss you so much. Still can’t believe this has happened.”
Following the fatal stabbing, investigators turned their attention to 29-year-old Bryce Cliff, from Fairy Meadow, who fled the house shortly before the victim’s body was discovered.
Cliff then allegedly broke into another house on Tichborne Crescent and assaulted a woman there before stealing her Toyota Camry.
After a “tip-off”, officers were able to locate and arrest the accused at Big Springs in the stolen Toyota, 20 kilometres south-east of Wagga.
Cliff appeared in a brief Wagga Local Court hearing Wednesday afternoon by audio visual link, where he was formally refused bail by the magistrate.
The accused frequently rubbed his hands against his face during the hearing.
The matter was adjourned until August 3.