Essex: Head teacher pays tribute to murdered Clacton teen

STAFF and students have been mourning the death of a “cheerful, witty” teenager who was stabbed to death outside a house party.

Jay Whiston, 17, was knifed on Saturday night in Colchester at a gathering attended by around 100 people.

Yesterday, pupils and teachers at the teenager’s school were united in grief.

Caroline Haynes, head teacher at Tendring Technology College, said: “I am devastated for his family. I feel so, so sad for them and it has been terrible to see students and staff crying and so affected by this awful event.

“We feel very raw in our grief and we’re all trying to support each other.”

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The law and business studies student of Aster Close, Clacton was taken to Colchester General Hospital with abdominal injuries but died shortly afterwards, having been stabbed at around 10pm.

Last night four people were still being quizzed by Essex Police. A 17-year-old boy from Colchester was arrested on suspicion of murder and still in custody are two 18-year-old men and another 17-year-old boy, all from Colchester.

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It is believed details of the event in Marlowe Way were circulated on Facebook, but that a number of uninvited guests turned up.

Ms Haynes said: “Jay was a wonderful young man. He was cheerful, witty, funny and made people laugh. He was part of really good, solid group of friends who were very supportive of each other - the sort of students you want in your school.

“He was not a young man going out looking for trouble, he was the type who would try and prevent it.

“Today has been very sombre but people remember the things that he did that made them laugh.”

She said students have written cards to Jay’s family and a book of condolence has been set-up in the school for pupils to write down their tributes..

Floral tributes and cards have also been laid at the scene of the crime, with messages of condolence also paid on Twitter and Facebook.

One post from ‏@SashaRossis said: “Tendring Technology College defo isnt the same without you, its been a hard day & everyone misses you already. your big character will never be forgotten.”

Another from @lorahfuller read: “Was so nice to see the amount of effort people made today, shows how much he was loved at our school #RIPJay.”

Speaking on ITV Daybreak, Jay’s mother Caroline Shearer wept as she described her son.

“He was kind, loving, honest, an A-level student studying law, he had his whole life mapped out didn’t he? He was going to get married, he was going to have two girls. He worked since the age of about 13 every Saturday with his dad,” she said.

“He has just gone.”

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