Parents of "cheeky and charming" Houghton stabbing victim pay tribute to their 18-year-old son

191021 - Jack Woodley Houghton stabbing - family photo
Jack Woodley was 18 when he died. Credit: Family photo

The parents of a teen who died following a fatal assault in Houghton-le-Spring have paid tribute to their son.

On Saturday, officers received a report of an altercation which began near the Britannia Inn on Newbottle Street.

Emergency services attended and found Jack Woodley, 18, severely injured.

The teenager, who was originally from the Durham area, was taken to hospital but sadly passed away from his injuries surrounded by loved ones on Sunday night.

Jack, who had recently moved to Sunderland, leaves behind his parents, three brothers, his girlfriend and many friends.

A murder investigation was launched in the wake of Jack’s death and nine teenagers, aged between 14-17, have been arrested on suspicion of wounding. They remain in police custody.

 Detective Inspector Joanne Brooks, of Northumbria Police, the senior investigating officer on the case, she said: “This was a tragic incident that has sadly resulted in the death of an 18-year-old man who had his whole life ahead of him.

 “Our thoughts go out to Jack’s loved ones at this incredibly difficult time and they will continue to be supported by specialist officers.

 “The family have requested that their privacy is respected, and we urge everyone to allow them space to grieve.”

 She added: “We know this incident has shocked the community and as our investigation continues, there will be extra patrols in the area and I would urge anyone with concerns to speak to an officer.

 “We are absolutely committed to finding out the circumstances that led to this most tragic event, and I’d like to thank witnesses, many of whom are young themselves, who have already been in touch.

“Our enquiries will continue and I would ask anyone who witnessed the incident or has information, who has not yet come forward, to pick up the phone and contact police or Crimestoppers. Any information, no matter how insignificant you may feel it is, could prove crucial to this investigation.”