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Church failing young people, says Christian anti-violence campaign group

A Christian anti gun and knife crime campaign group is accusing churches of not doing enough to end the cycle of youth violence after a teenager was stabbed to death on her way to school in Birmingham on Thursday. Sixteen year-old Christina Edkins was attacked on a double-decker bus on Hagley Road in Edgbaston just after half past seven this morning.

West Midlands Police has arrested a 22-year-old man after a massive manhunt and said officers had spotted a man who was acting suspiciously who fitted the description of the suspect.

Police dogs and firearms officers had been brought in for the search.

Birmingham-based Families for Peace told Premier that churches need to engage more with local communities to get young people off the streets, out of trouble and into worship.

Gleen Reed, who set up the group after her son was killed, told Premier's Marcus Jones during the News Hour that churches need to be more pro-active in their communities.  

Christina attended Leasowes High School in Halesowen, and headteacher Neil Shaw made this statement:

"We're deeply saddened to hear of the tragic news today of Christina's death in Birmingham. 

"She was a bright and popular student, much loved by staff and students alike and she will be greatly missed by this school."

Specially trained Family Liaison Officers are providing immediate care for the victim's next of kin and police are looking at CCTV footage.

Anyone with information are being asked to call the police on 0800 096 0095.

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