A 16-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of murder after a 15-year-old girl died in a stabbing in Northumberland.

Police said they were called to the Priestpopple area of Hexham shortly after 5.10pm on Friday to reports that the two teenagers had what appeared to be knife injuries.

They were both taken to hospital, with the girl’s injuries initially described as life-threatening.

“Sadly, despite best efforts of hospital staff, the girl passed away later that evening,” said a Northumbria Police statement.

“The boy suffered serious, non-life-threatening injuries and remains in hospital. Both of their families are being supported by specially-trained officers at this devastating time.”

Police said a 16-year-old boy was initially arrested on suspicion of assault, and then on suspicion of murder. He remains in custody.

Earlier, the force said officers believe “all those involved are known to each other”.

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Police believe all those involved are known to each other

Forensic officers in white suits were seen in the town centre on Saturday and a cordon was expected to remain in place into the weekend.

“It’s an absolute tragedy, the town is in complete shock, to lose one of our children who attends a local high school is just horrendous,” said Hexham mayor Derek Kennedy.

He said the town had a low crime rate and was last year awarded the happiest place to live in Britain.

“It’s a very warm and loving community so for a tragedy such as this to happen, we always find it much more difficult and it’s knocked everyone for six,” he added.