Murder in Moree has shocked community

THE Moree community remains in shock after one 16-year-old boy was allegedly stabbed and later died on Sunday while another was charged with murder and faced court yesterday  afternoon.

An outpouring of grief came from the community yesterday as the news sunk in that Pallamallawa teen Mitchell Bartram had been killed.

It is understood he was a TAFE student and would have celebrated his 17th birthday next month.

His alleged murderer, a 16-year-old local boy who can’t be named for legal reasons, remains in custody following his arrest just an hour after the incident occurred.

Police allege about 3pm on Sunday, in Moree’s main street – Balo – a fight took place.

It is believed there had been friction in the past between the two and the fight had erupted after an argument. 

During the altercation, Mitchell had been stabbed.

He was taken to Moree hospital by a passerby but died.

Barwon Local Area Command police and the state’s Homicide Squad investigated and launched Strike Force Exford.

About 4pm, a 16-year-old boy was arrested at the scene and taken to the Moree Police Station where he was charged with one count of murder.

He had been refused bail pending an appearance at Moree Children’s Court yesterday, at which bail was not applied for.

He is listed to reappear for mention on Monday, November 26.A number of witnesses have been spoken to and the murder weapon had not been found yesterday.

Police officers and State Emergency Service volunteers remained at the scene of the crime, surrounded by police tape, until noon.

Meanwhile, friends and family of the victim took to social media to air their grief for the former Moree Secondary College student.

Moree Plains Shire mayor Katrina Humphries said the town was in shock.

“And disbelief that this can happen in such a small community,” she said.

Cr Humphries said the incident had effectively ruined the lives of two local families.

She said the best place for Mitchell’s friends was probably school, where they could be there for one another and have access to grief councillors.

Within hours of Mitchell’s death, Facebook tribute pages had been set up in his memory.

One friend wrote: “you are a top bloke and you’ll never be forgotten.”

Another wrote: “seems like just yesterday that we were all at school, having a laugh and just cracking up.”

His sister, Holly, also received a number of condolence messages.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this heartbreaking time,” one friend wrote.

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