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Teenager convicted of murder at a party

|News, Violent crime

A teenager has been convicted of the murder of a 17-year-old who died after being stabbed during a fight at a party near Horsham, Sussex. 

The teenager, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was heard by witnesses making references to knives during the party in July 2023. He had already been asked to leave the party after fighting broke out earlier in the night and a teenage girl at the party had complained about his behaviour. 

After further problems with the defendant were reported by a girl at the party, the victim Charlie Cosser went to speak to him and was stabbed several times in the chest on the dancefloor during a brief altercation. The seriousness of what happened was not immediately apparent. He collapsed a few minutes later and died two days later in hospital. 

The defendant had blood on his hands after the party and, following his arrest, injuries were found to his left hand. A forensic expert concluded that this was likely to have been caused by a sharp object such as a knife.

Joe Pullen from the Crown Prosecution Service South East said: “No-one at the party saw a knife or witnessed Charlie being stabbed on the dancefloor, but it was clear that Charlie was not injured before the fight and immediately after that, he had suffered the stab wounds that led to his tragic death. 

“We were able to prove, from various witness accounts, that a knife was brought to the party, even though the knife that killed Charlie was never found. 

“The defendant was clearly intent on violence that night, as he was overheard talking to others about 'beating someone up'. 

“Though nothing can bring Charlie back, I hope his family can find some comfort in the fact that the offender has been brought to justice. Our thoughts remain with them at this time.”

Notes to editors

  • The defendant, who is under the age of 18, was convicted of murder and  possessing a knife.
    Joe Pullen is a Senior Crown Prosecutor with CPS South East

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