The parents of a school girl murdered in a Bolton park have released a statement asking for the use of her photo to protest against the Black Lives Matter movement to be stopped.
Seven-year-old Emily Jones died after being stabbed in an unprovoked attack at Queens Park in Bolton on 22nd March 2020.
Her school photograph, released by her parents upon paying tribute to her, has been seen circulating online in recent weeks in opposition the Black Lives Matter movement and to support other campaigns and protests.
Now, her parents have spoken out condemning this via an official statement made through Greater Manchester Police on Wednesday evening.
Sarah and Mark Jones said: “We are aware that many people are using the picture we released of our daughter Emily, when we publicly paid tribute to her following the worst day of our lives, as part of recent protests and campaigns.”
“Today we kindly ask the public to stop using the picture of our Emily from one of her days at school.”
“We hold this picture dear to our hearts and to see it being used in this way is incredibly upsetting – Emily loved everything and everyone, regardless of their race, gender or beliefs. As we’ve said before, she was beautiful inside and out and had a heart as big as her smile.”
“We can’t thank people enough for the support we have received as we continue to live through the nightmare that is life without Emily, but we’re still grieving over the loss of our beautiful daughter and seeing her picture being used as part of recent protests is causing us huge distress.”
“A woman has been charged with the murder of our daughter and we want to ensure that we respect the legal process and ask people not to speculate over the circumstances surrounding her death.”
“We thank you for your support with this matter and hope that you can respect our wishes. We wish everyone health and happiness at this uncertain time.”
A 30-year-old woman by the name Eltiona Skana has been charged with Emily’s murder and is due to appear in court for a plea and pre-trial hearing on 15th September 2020.
For more information regarding this statement, visit the Greater Manchester Police website here.