7 Jun 2013

Fight before teen's death may have been filmed

10:05 pm on 7 June 2013

Police believe a fight which occured before an Auckland teenager's death after rugby practice may have been filmed on cellphones.

Stephen Dudley, 15, died in hospital on Thursday after an altercation with two others at nearby school.

Police have confirmed witnesses told them the fight after training was filmed. They have taken the cellphones of those who saw the altercation and are having them forensically examined.

A 15-year-old appeared in the Waitakere Youth Court, while a 17-year-old boy appeared in Waitakere District Court charged with assault on Friday. Both have name suppression and have been remanded on bail to reappear in July. All other details have been suppressed.

Police said on Friday that further charges are likely, but they will have to talk to Crown prosecutors in more detail before making a decision. Radio New Zealand understands that a manslaughter charge against the 17-year-old is being considered.

At the hearing at Waitakere District Court about a dozen students held up a banner carrying the words 'RIP Stephen'. One said it was their way of showing respect to their friend.

Flowers were placed at the gates of the school, where a special assembly was to be held for students.

The school says staff are working with police and the key priority at the moment is supporting Stephen Dudley's family.

A family friend says Stephen Dudley was a lovely boy who liked basketball and rugby, and had big sporting dreams.

Les Tipping worked with the 15-year-old's father, Brent Dudley, as a caretaker at Kelston Intermediate School. He visited Stephen Dudley's parents and siblings on Friday and says they are devastated.