Teenager Dies After Attack In Rottingdean

A 14-year-old boy has appeared in court charged with the manslaughter of a friend of former X Factor star Frankie Cocozza.

The teenager, from Brighton, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is accused of killing Connor Saunders, 19, who died at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton on Sunday morning after an argument in the street on Saturday night.

Mr Saunders, of Downsway, Woodingdean, Brighton, is believed to have received a forceful punch during an altercation between two groups of people in West Street, Rottingdean, East Sussex, between 10.30pm and 10.55pm on Saturday.

A post-mortem examination found that Mr Saunders died from injuries consistent with trauma to the head.

Ramon Pape, defending the boy, told Brighton Magistrates' Court, which sat as a youth court, that this was a tragic case.

He added that the defence case would be that the teenager had acted in self-defence.

District Judge Peter Crabtree remanded the boy to local authority accommodation with conditions including a curfew from 6pm to 6am.

He is also not allowed to contact potential witnesses or enter Brighton and Hove, Rottingdean, Woodingdean and Peacehaven unless accompanied by a member of the youth offending service or someone from the local authority, the court was told.

He will next appear at Brighton Youth Court on May 15, where his case will be committed to crown court.

Two boys, aged 13 and 14, who were arrested on suspicion of murder have been bailed until May 8.

After Mr Saunders' death, Cocozza tweeted: "My life will never be the same.''

He began the message with the #cs26 hashtag, which has been used by Sussex Police in messages about the incident.

He also used the social networking site to ask people to join the Saunders family at Tesco in Rottingdean on Monday night, at the spot where the teenager was killed, to say a prayer for his friend.

Peacehaven and Telscombe Football Club released a statement saying they had lost a "wonderful person and talented footballer''.

Leave your tributes to Connor below

Recently Played Tracks

On Radio: Mark Watson

4pm - 7pm

Email the show

Text 'SUSSEX' to 82122

Mark Watson

On TV: Turn up The 00s R'N'B!

6pm - 8pm

Watch heart TV

  • Now playing: Non-stop hit music

Heart VIP


Autumn Weather

Find your local four day weather report here.

Listening To Radio Win With Heart

Make Heart the soundtrack to your day and you could be a winner with great prizes up for grabs throughout the day.

Shopping Our Advertisers

Find out more about some of the companies advertising on Heart 102.4 and 103.5

Advertise Advertise in Sussex

Get some great ideas on how to advertise your business on radio, online and on mobile.

Follow Heart on Twitter